Andrew Brenner

With help of AU master's degree, Brenner named Orrville High School principal

Published on June 25, 2024
Ashland University

While the classes were helpful with the basics of educational administration, Andrew Brenner appreciated that Ashland University’s Master’s in Education program went beyond textbooks.

“It was the interactions with my classmates and people in the field who came to speak to us that provided the ‘practical’ information that I have been able to incorporate into my positions,” Brenner said.

His latest position is high school principal for Orrville City Schools, which he will begin with the start of the 2024-25 school year.

“Although it has been a while since I finished my program,” said Brenner, who earned his AU master’s degree in 2009, “the lessons learned and the people I worked with still provide me with the insights I need on an almost daily basis.”

Brenner had just started serving as associate principal at Medina High School when he completed AU’s Master’s in Education program, which he said took him about 18 months to complete. 

With about 16 years in that job, Brenner said he’s going to greatly miss Medina City Schools, which include his two children as graduates.

“I’ve made great friends and have had the opportunity to work with some great teachers,” he said.

He not only will continue to live in Medina, but also keeping working as a part-time patrol officer for Montville Township in Medina County.

“The former chief of police at Montville offered me the opportunity and it allows me additional training in school safety that is generally not available to the public,” said Brenner, who graduated from the University of Akron Police Academy in 2018. “Ultimately, keeping kids safe is our biggest responsibility.”

Taking reports, investigating complaints, conducting traffic control are a few of his responsibilities as a Montville police officer.

“I work when I have time,” Brenner said. “The department has been very flexible in allowing me to work when I can.”

Its flexibility was one of the reasons Brenner said he chose AU for a master’s degree. It accommodated the needs of a working educator. Before Medina City Schools, Brenner was a social studies teacher and football coach in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.

The reputation Ashland had in preparing educators for the challenges of leading a building was another reason he decided to attend AU, where he said he learned a lot about school law and special education law, two areas that take up a majority of his time as a school administrator.

With the help of AU, Brenner said he feels prepared to lead a new group of staff and students at Orrville City Schools, and is really looking forward to this new career challenge.

“It’s a chance to work with the staff, kids and families to shape the educational environment of Orrville High School,” he said. “I will have the opportunity to work with parents, members of the community and local organizations to continue to build strong relationships.”