Program: Instructor, Food Service/Hospitality (Program Chair)
Education/Industry Certifications: Master of Arts degree,
University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Registered Dietitian; Licensed
Medical Nutrition Therapist
Has taught at SCC since: 1983
Years of work experience outside SCC: 9 years professionally
working as a dietitian. However, I have worked since I was 14, many
of those years in food service.
Describe your teaching
philosophy.My teaching philosophy is focused on developing a relationship
with the students. I find out where they are in their lives, what
they have accomplished, what their goals are, and determine how to
draw upon their strengths. That is much easier done with program
students than it is for my Basic Nutrition class where I have 40 in
a class and only see them for a quarter.
Why did you decide to
teach at a community college?I decided to teach at a community college because I was working
at a hospital and taught classes for cardiac rehab and decided I
liked teaching. When the job at SCC became available, I applied
because I wanted to learn and expand my horizons. I found out you
really learn your topic when you teach it.
What can prospective
students expect when they enroll in your program?Prospective students can expect an education in food service
which will give them the basic understanding and skills of the
profession to be employed. That is our mission statement. We also
have a professional, friendly and personable faculty, and we all
understand that we are here for students. We have, as a program,
worked very hard to meet our accreditation standards and meet all
the expectations of the College, which only benefits students.
What experiences outside
of SCC do you bring to the classroom/laboratory that enhance
student learning?Experiences I bring from outside SCC to enhance student learning
are that I worked in the profession nine years before I came and
four years prior to that in restaurants, clubs and bars. I do
consulting work on the side in my spare time. In Nutrition class it
is easy to bring in true-to-life experiences of the ages and stages
of my children and now my grandchildren and, unfortunately, of
aging patients and Alzheimer's. I am active in my profession by
being involved in my professional organizations and of course do
continuing education regularly to keep up my registration,
licensure and for my own intellectual growth.
What advice do you have
for students pursuing a degree in your program?The advice I give students pursuing a degree in our program is
to be able to use both their technical skills and their people
skills to grow in their career. They need to be able to dream but
also to be realistic. We have a project in seminar class where they
pick a goal they are passionate about, research it and report to
the class the steps they would have to take to make that goal
realistic. This can be a real eye-opener for them. We also
recommend that they work while they are in school so they can
better apply their education and know whether this is a career for
What do you enjoy most
about working with students?I enjoy the energy students bring to the building. I love the
first day of classes, meeting new people and just feeling the
dynamics of each class. I like advising because I get to know the
students better on a one-to-one basis. The best thing about my job
is watching them grow and develop, both in their skill level and in
their confidence. I also am blessed with a great team to work with.
We share a common goal.
What is the best part
about being an SCC faculty member?The best part of being an SCC faculty member is the freedom to
have an idea and run with it. We are allowed to make changes as we
see fit without having to wait to accomplish what we want. New
ideas are encouraged, and it keeps us from ever being bored. We
have the best faculty in our program, and we all respect each other
and are a cohesive team. That makes it fun to come to work. I am
proud to say I teach at SCC as we are an established reputable
college and department.
What has been your
proudest moment as an instructor?I could not pick one proudest moment of being an instructor as
there are many. However, I think when a graduate or even a current
student gets the job that is a perfect fit for them, that is the
very best I feel about my job. We keep good communication with many
of our graduates, and I have been at SCC so long that I have
graduates hiring graduates. I even have children of graduates in
the program. It makes us feel proud that they want to hire our
students or send their children to our program. We also have
students who have done incredible things with their careers and
come back and tell us how helpful our faculty and program was to
What do you like to do
when you're not teaching?When I'm not teaching, my favorite thing is to spend time with
our grandchildren (of course they are the cutest and smartest
grandchildren ever). My husband and I enjoy eating out, and I love
it because there is usually a graduate or student wherever we go.
We also tend to our mothers' needs.
What would students be surprised to know about
you?I can't think of anything the students would be surprised to
know about me as I'm pretty much an open book. They might not know
that I lived in a sod house in the Sandhills my first two years of
life, or that I attended country grade school until fifth grade and
that my house is full of antiques.
Is there anything you'd like to add?I would just like to add that working at SCC for the last 31
years has been a job that has kept me challenged and rewarded, and
I have never had a day that I have felt even close to being bored.
I am grateful to my co-workers, my dean, the administration and the
college as a whole for making my time at SCC such a great