MS Program: Contact an Alumnus

Name: Megan Santini
Current Employment/Schooling: Special education teacher Catalina Foothills High School, Tucson, AZ
Specialties: Behavior Specialist and Multiple Disabilities Specialist at CFHS
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Educational trends are pointing toward more collaboration and data-driven curriculum. At the high school that I am working at, teachers are collaborating weekly and working in data teams to improve practice. BYU's special education master's program has helped me be ahead in my field. I feel confident collaborating and confident with the action-based research process because of my experience in the Masters program. My classes at BYU taught me how to work with other teachers in the classroom and in consultation settings. I learned how to conduct research, which is helpful as I work as a member of a data team in my current position. I am proud to be an alumna of BYU's special education master's program and am grateful for the things I've learned as they have directly improved my practice as a teacher in special education.


Name: Sungti Hsu
Current Employment/Schooling: Doctoral Program in Department Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at University of Kansas, Emphasis in paraprofessional policy
Specialties: Paraprofessional training and supervision
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The MS program in SPED helped me in three ways. First, it offered practical experiences in areas such as applied behavior analysis and consultation. Because I do not have much teaching experience in public school settings, these experiences give me an advantage looking for clinical research positions. Second, and perhaps the most important way the program helped me, was working closely with professors. It helped me to discover my interests early and centered my research and coursework in those areas. Publishing papers and presenting in conferences with professors in the department also gave me an opportunity to see what others are working on in similar areas. Networking opportunities were also provided through these conferences. I got to meet great researchers in the areas I am interested in and learned from them. Third, having a teaching assistantship in the department gave me the glimpse of college teaching and helped me to develop confidence in sharing my knowledge in a formal setting. I believe, the master's program in special education prepared me to continue my studies and helped me to be competitive with other great students from all over the world.


Name: Jake Figueira
Current Employment/Schooling: Special education teacher, Timpanogos High School, Orem, UT
Specialties: Community-based skills, disabilities in literature, video self-modeling
Email address:


BYU's CPSE MS program provided me with in-depth knowledge and hands-on experience in many areas critical for today's special educators. Students in the program have opportunities to learn, often in groups of just 5-10 students, from recognized experts in fields, including behavior management, autism, disabilities in literature, special education law, and collaboration with families and general educators. In addition, we received highly valuable training from combined classes with literacy cohort students and school psychology students, as well as in conducting independent research. All graduate faculty excel not only in their fields, but in teaching to individual students and helping them to truly grasp key concepts. The knowledge and skills I obtained and honed at BYU have made a huge difference in my approach as a teacher and by extension in the lives of the students I teach. Thanks, BYU!

Department List Content Types: 
Counseling Psychology & Special Education (CPSE)