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Program Director Q&A with Michael Houston, Ph.D.

Michael Houston Q&A

What do you believe is the most valuable element of your program?

The MOL program at SNU is uniquely and intentionally designed as a different approach to leadership education. Two primary themes are woven throughout the courses. The value of culturally responsive leadership practices is integrated with principles of love, and presents leaders with a different path for personal growth and improved leadership and influence.

The first four courses provide a foundational core for the program. The remaining courses provide a deeper dive into specific leadership practices...combining to make a one-of-a-kind graduate leadership experience. The MOL program provides leaders with practical approaches to improve self-awareness and confidence along with leadership skills and practices to enhance influence.

How/Why did you enter this field?

As a life-long educator, I seek to help others understand who they are and how they can improve relationships with others through leadership. I am passionate about the role leadership plays in individual lives and organizations.

How does a student succeed in your program?

Students who are actively engaged in the program will find success. The MOL faculty seek to provide individualized support throughout each course. The courses are designed to help students learn more about themselves and others. Students who prioritize graduate work, and are willing to seek to understand themselves will succeed.

What advice would you give to someone interested in your program/industry?

A graduate program is a major life decision. I would advise prospective students to think about the time they have available for study and discuss this with those closest to them. This program is designed to help leaders learn more about leadership theory and practice along with self exploration and integration of Christian Imago Dei principles. Graduates of the MOL program will be well suited for expanded leadership in whatever field they desire.

What course is your favorite to teach and why?

Foundations of Personal Leadership is the introductory course in the program. I love the excitement new students bring along with the content of the course which challenges students to dive deeper in their understanding of self and others. It is also in the first course where students learn how to improve their writing and research skills, preparing them to succeed in future courses. The overall journey through this course is rewarding for me the professor and the students.

What is your favorite book/podcast? 

I enjoy the Freakonomics and Revisionist History podcasts. I also enjoyed reading Love Your Enemies by Arthur Brooks.


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