Substitute Teacher — Pea Ridge School District
Explain your career path
I worked for 20 years in radio broadcasting, then became a clerk in a hospital for 9 years, then a clerk for a government contracting firm. When that job ended I became a substitute teacher and I am currently enrolled in the Arkansas Department of Education APPEL Program, which is a non-traditional path to teacher licensure. Life has really been a long and winding road.
What was your major at Southeast and how would you characterize the quality of that program to prospective students?
Mass Communications with an emphasis in Radio/TV Studies was my major. I always had an interest in media, film, TV, radio, and so on. It seemed natural for me to go into mass communications. I did embark upon a broadcasting career after graduation and it was a field I was involved in for 20 years.
Why did you choose to attend Southeast?
I lived in Sikeston at the time, and SEMO was the closest university.
Who influenced you most during your time at Southeast?
Got to say it was some of the Mass Communications Department instructors, including Fred Wyman, Herb Taylor, Gordon Holland, and Jim Dufeck. Larry Easley in the History Department was another instructor I remember fondly.
Share your best college memory.
Working on student productions at KRCU radio or at the two cable access channels the college operated at the time, CAC10 and SEMO7. The folks I went to school with were extremely talented individuals and I am proud to have been associated with them. I was one of those students who was in classes with and worked right along side Cedric Kyles, better known as Cedric the Entertainer. He was a nice guy to work with in those early days of our careers.
If you were in Greek Life, the Honors Program or any other student organization, please tell us about that experience and how it impacted you.
My 12 plus years as news director at KXJK/KBFC radio, Forrest City, Arkansas. I won a bucketful of awards for my work, including a Distinguished Service Award from the Journalism Department at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 2000. I am also proud of becoming a substitute teacher in 2017, and entering the Arkansas Department of Education APPEL Program for non-traditional teacher licensure in 2018. I hope to soon become a licensed teacher for middle school social studies.
What is the most important thing you learned while you were at Southeast?
People from around the world want the same things, to have a way to make a living, to have families, to be loved, and to be respected for what it is that they are doing with their life.
Describe Southeast in three words.
Great learning place.
What advice would you give current students or recent graduates interested in pursuing a career in your professional field?
Soak up all the education you can while at SEMO so you will be ready to move into the professional world.