Matthew O’Brien, assistant principal at Goshen High School and director of physical education, health, and athletics, has completed his doctoral defense and received a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree from Seton Hall University.
Dr. O’Brien has served as an administrator in the district since July 2017; he was previously a teacher and coach at Goshen High School. In addition to earning his doctorate at Seton Hall, Dr. O’Brien has earned degrees from the University of Delaware, City College of New York, and Long Island University.
His dissertation, the “Effect of Commitment on Teacher-Coach Burnout,” focuses on teacher-coaches of interscholastic athletics.
“What I found, essentially, is that participating in athletics not only benefits students but teachers as well,” said Dr. O’Brien. “The coaching role, despite the added responsibility and stress at times, may actually lead to greater feelings of commitment and accomplishment, and those feelings extend a positive impact to the classroom and to students.”
Earning his doctorate is a longtime goal of Dr. O’Brien, and he attributes his ambition and hard work to his family.
“Believe it or not this was something I wanted to do since I was a kid, but now that I’m older, aside from wanting to further myself as a professional, I wanted to set the example of working hard for my two daughters,” said Dr. O’Brien. “Ultimately, I just want them to be proud of their dad.”
“I am forever grateful to the people who made it possible: my committee members at Seton Hall, my colleagues here in Goshen, especially Dr. Gregory Voloshin, and of course, my wife.”