Skip to main content

Swathi Menon

Ph.D. - Educational Policy, Planning, and Leadership - Curriculum and Learning Design

Swathi Menon

  • 2026, William & Mary, Ph.D. - Educational Policy, Planning, and Leadership - Curriculum and Learning Design
  • 1998, Mumbai University, Master of Arts, Counseling Psychology 
  • 1996, Mumbai University, Bachelor of Arts, Psychology

What kind of educational and professional experiences did you have prior to beginning this degree?
With a career span of little over two decades, the psychology and education fields encapsulate my experience. With a master’s degree in psychology, my career began as a school counselor and transitioned to being a course coordinator, senior faculty, director of academics, director of school consultancy services and finally a school mentor for an emerging K10 school in India. These different hats have been my stepping stones in the quest for higher learning and eventually moving here to pursue the program at the School of Education.

As a student pursuing a doctorate in Curriculum and Learning Design, why did you choose this field, and what motivates you in this work?
The different roles (teaching and administration) have shaped me to be the person I am today. Having loved and given my best in every role, I found the most satisfaction when working with teachers and enabling them to think beyond the normal, enabling them to create a curriculum for students that builds interest in education. It was training and teaching that brought out the best in me. The roles of a senior faculty and a school mentor can be credited for this realization. It has therefore been my motivation to pursue the Curriculum and Learning Design program to advance myself. I believe that improving the quality of education is possible by improving curricula and teaching standards. I am sure the learning I attain here will go a long way to accentuate my abilities to accomplish the role that I chose for myself.

What do you hope to be doing after graduation? In 10 or 15 years?
My passion is teaching, and I wish to pursue my calling as a faculty, training future elementary education teachers. It is my belief that I can make a difference in my role as a faculty in an educational institution of higher learning. As an advocate of lifelong learning, it is known that my learning does not stop here. It will be my constant endeavor to work towards further advancement of the field of education, through continual research projects and promoting the research findings for the betterment of education and future research. Nurturing students and making them future enablers and researchers would be something that I want to achieve in my career.

Why did you choose William & Mary and specifically your degree program? What sets this degree program apart from those offered at other colleges?
William & Mary’s School of Education is well known for its high standards in teacher education and excellent research work in the field of education. The academic interests of the professors, the research that is pursued and the depth of knowledge that is imparted are amongst the best one can find. This also aligns with my educational and professional goals. Creativity and innovation in research are encouraged and that has propelled me to join the Ph.D. program in Curriculum and Learning Design.

What has been the most influential experience you've had so far in your program?
This is my first year at the School of Education at William & Mary. These few months have been truly transformational. It is the level of knowledge and the quality of teaching by my acclaimed professors, that has impressed me. A truly uplifting and inspiring aspect of this journey has been the support and encouragement received from my faculty mentors, they are practically rooting for your success. I hope to imbibe these teaching styles and supportive qualities in my career as well.

Is there any additional information you would want a prospective student to know about the School of Education and its degree programs?
The School of Education at William & Mary is an institute of great repute and if your dream is to be an educator in a school or work in the education field, this is the institution that would enable you to fulfill your dreams. The professors, scholars and researchers themselves, are here to help you succeed and their support is felt at every stage. They push you to step beyond your comfort zone and their aim for you is to attain your best potential. You can, therefore, only set yourself up for success as a student of the School of Education at William & Mary.

Learn more