Dr. Michelle Abrego
Her education began in WELS schools, Michigan Lutheran Seminary and Dr. Martin Luther College ’81, and continued at public universities: Michigan State (M.A. Curriculum and Instruction), Texas A&M (M.Ed. Educational Administration), and University of Texas, Austin (Ed.D. Educational Administration). She taught four years in WELS schools (Christ-Big Bend WI and Holy Word-Austin TX), five years in public elementary and junior high schools, and then served another five years as administrator of public elementary and high school. She was an educational consultant in Corpus Christi and the Texas state program director for Safe and Drug-Free Schools.
Currently, she is an associate professor at the University of Texas, Brownsville, teaching master’s and doctoral courses in leadership, school improvement, and engaging families. She has been the Educational Leadership Program Coordinator for eight of the last 10 years.
Her research and writing has focused on engaging families in schools, teaching in teacher-prep programs, and support for novice teachers. She is publishing a book on engaging families of English language learners, she has authored many articles in national education journals, and she has presented regularly at national education conferences.
Her many awards include the President’s Exceptional Merit Awards (2006 and 2011) and the Center for Civic Engagement Service Award (2010).
In her personal life, Dr. Abrego has been married to Chuey Abrego for 17 years, and they have an 8-year-old daughter, Hannah, whom they adopted from China when she was 11 months old. Hannah keeps them busy with chess tournaments, piano lessons, and cheerleading practice.
The family lives in Rancho Viejo, Texas, about 20 miles from South Padre Island and eight miles from the Mexican border. Michelle likes yard work, walking, and relaxing at the beach, all year-round activities since they never get snow in South Texas. She teaches Sunday school and plays the computer-organ at her church. She enjoys music, anything from Black Eyed Peas to Credence Clearwater Revival to George Strait, and she loves reality talent shows, like Dancing with the Stars, American Idol, and The X Factor.
From the Midwest to South Texas, from the University of Texas back to MLC, God has led Michelle to serve him in both WELS and public schools. Now she has decided to share her expertise also with the teachers of WELS through MLC’s graduate program. She is teaching Educational Leadership.
“I’ve been blessed to have been in higher education and also to have taught in WELS schools,” she says. “Now I have this wonderful opportunity to serve the Lord in an area where there is a need. Since the master’s program is online, I can teach from South Texas. I am looking forward to working with and learning from Christian colleagues and serving the Lord together.”
“We are grateful that God has brought Dr. Abrego to us at MLC,” says Director of Graduate Studies John Meyer. “We cannot help but be impressed with her resume and thankful that she is so humble and so excited to use her gifts in our program.”