Jason Long

South Portland High School, 2001
Bowdoin College, 2005
University of Maine at Farmington, 2014
Current town: Buckfield

“My favorite part of my job is helping young people take the next steps in their life and come to realize they are capable of more than they first thought.“

As the principal of TW Kelly Dirigo Middle School in Dixfield, Jason is a leader in his community. The first in his family to attend college, he went on to receive a Master’s in Educational Leadership. He is now a role model to the 168 students he and his devoted staff teach, and enjoys the small school atmosphere because he really gets to know the students and families. He has also stayed closely connected to the Mitchell Institute, serving on the Board of Directors as well as the Alumni Council.

How are you having an impact on your community?
For all of the fancy leadership definitions out there, I have found that only one thing makes you a leader: when people are willing to follow you. This means you have to be doing the work right along with everyone else and modeling how to be a servant to the greater good. I get to work with a great staff to serve a wonderful rural community. I love it.

What is your advice to current college students?
Ignore the pessimism and negativity about our present day. Every generation faces challenges. The current challenges will no doubt shape your life and the future, but if you work hard and stay positive then you will find your purpose and make a difference. Don't wait for an invitation or perfect timing to do the right thing; go for it.

Why do you donate to the Mitchell Institute?
Maturity and success are defined by what you give, not what you have; I want fellow Alumni to know how great it feels to donate back to the Mitchell Institute. We as beneficiaries of the Scholarship are part of something much bigger than ourselves which is intended to benefit the entire state for generations to come. Do your part and you'll be blessed in even greater measure.