Karla Esser brings unique perspective as new director of Master of Arts in Education program

Hannah BreeceJuly 16, 2013

(DENVER) -- The Regis College Master of Arts in Education (MAE) Program in Regis College at Regis University will welcome Karla Esser as the new director, starting on Aug. 5.  Esser has been with the department since beginning her master’s degree in 1998. 

Regis College --one of three colleges at Regis University -- is the residential, liberal-arts college for traditional-aged students at Regis University. 

A Colorado native, Esser graduated from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages- German/ Linguistics.  Esser obtained her master’s degree with an emphasis in Learning and Teaching from the Regis University Master of Arts in Education Program, and she attended the University of Denver for the Principal Licensure Program.  Esser later attended the University of Northern Colorado for her Doctorate in Educational Leadership Policy and Studies.

After obtaining her bachelor’s, Esser lived in Bavaria, Germany, for many years, teaching elementary and high school English as Second Language (ESL) students.  She later returned to Colorado, where she worked for three years as a district ESL coach in Aurora Public Schools.  After completing her master’s degree and principal licensure, she took a position as the director of curriculum, instruction, assessment, and ELA at Sheridan School District, where she stayed for eight years.  Esser has also been a consultant for Amesse Elementary School, advising for literacy and teacher effectiveness, and has consulted for the Colorado Department of Education in initiatives concerning literacy and English Language Development benchmarks. 

“I feel fortunate to have a wide lens in the field of preK-12 education and what the preK-12 field hopes for and expects from university programs,” Esser reflected.  With her diverse background in the education field, Esser hopes to keep the MAE program working closely with schools in order to “meet the specific needs of teachers and administrators,” and she sees the new Teacher Leadership certificate and graduate degree as yet another way for the program to both support teachers and to “exceed the new high standards of Senate Bill 10-191.”  She ultimately wants to see the department remain abreast of developments in the field that will optimize teacher education and enhance student achievement.  Esser is also thankful to be working with “a very motivated and capable group of affiliate faculty members, mentors, and department staff.”

“My deepest gratitude to Kathy Nutting for paving the way and developing a highly regarded graduate program for teachers,” Esser said.  “It is a great honor to have been mentored by one of the most committed teacher educators in the field, and I genuinely appreciate following the path that has already led many to being the best educators they can possibly be.”