Burns Middle School Principal Matthew DiPrima 2023-24 Distinguished Fellows Cohort.

Burns Middle School Principal Matthew DiPrima was one of four principals from Hillsborough County Public Schools to be selected by the Cahn Fellowship program to be a 2023-24 Distinguished Fellows Cohort.  

DiPrima will attend six weekend conferences throughout the yearlong program. A large contingency from Hillsborough County went to the first conference of the year from October 6-9. The group included Interim Superintendent Van Ayers, Hillsborough County Chief of Schools Sue Burkett, Hillsborough Director of Leadership Development Teresa Campbell and DiPrima. 

The Cahn Fellowship program provides advanced leadership development and nationwide networking opportunities between school leaders in metropolitan areas with an end goad goal to improve public education. One of the core beliefs of the program is that school leadership has an enormous impact on student outcomes. 

Burkett is enthusiastic about DiPrima’s selection as a Fellows Cohort. 

“Having the opportunity to see the program, I believe the relationships established and the support provided by other principals will not only make Mr. DiPrima an even stronger, more effective leader, but I believe he will find new energy and be able to take his experience and share it with his colleagues here in Hillsborough,” Burkett said. 

DiPrima is excited about the opportunities for personal growth and connection. He said that he truly bonded with other principals at the first conference. They kicked off the conference on Friday with seminars and then, from Saturday until Monday, each day was spent in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania with historians discussing leadership with the generals involved in the Battle of Gettysburg. 

“We were on the actual battlefields. It was not only insightful from the aspect of being an American, but it was insightful from what you learn from these other leaders across the country,” DiPrima said. He added, “One of the things about history is that you learn what to do based on what others have done before you, or what not to do.” 

DiPrima knew he wanted to be an educator early in life, in fifth grade. He has been principal of Burns Middle School for 10 years. 

“My priority is making sure students’ school experience is the best experience they can have,” DiPrima said. 

A Cahn Fellowship motto is “Because strong principals make better schools.” For more information about Cahn Fellowship program and the ways it benefits schools, visit www.cahnfellowship.org.

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