Eighteen years old. Decide what you want to do for the rest of your life.
You have three months to decide.
That is the position in which most high school students find themselves. Many have a passion and a goal.
I did not.
I just knew I was going to Bible college where my friends had gone because it was the only place I had ever visited. What I did not know is this was the first step in my educational career where God would step in because I had no idea what I was doing.
I have been fortunate to have been a student at three excellent institutions of learning, Lincoln Christian College (now University), Greenville College (now University), and Southern Illinois University@Edwardsville (SIU-E). Each one prepared me for the next unknown step. Along the way there were other schools with seminars, distance learning (class delivered on a VCR tape!), and some on-campus courses, but these three shaped my career in education.
It started at Lincoln Christian College.
I had heard students who transferred to other schools from Lincoln were well prepared to complete the work expected. It is true, we learned to research and write papers with high expectations. God guided my steps in faith, and he also guided them in my classes. After marriage, Darryl, LCC ’75, and I settled in Greenville, Illinois where I enrolled at Greenville College. I was beginning to see education as my best choice, and I graduated from GC with a BA in education.
My one education regret to that point was that I had completed only three years at LCC and did not get to take Restoration History with Dr. Enos Dowling. God was still in control of my education when I had no idea how to make it happen. I enrolled in graduate school at SIU-E, and in my final few classes, I requested that one of my electives be a history course from LCC—with Dr. Dowling (class delivered on a cassette tape!). It was granted, as was my master’s thesis on the Restoration Movement.
After teaching in public schools for over 25 years, I felt it was time to work with adults rather than children. It was also time to be able to be with family living at a distance. God met the need once more when I wanted a job that would allow me time to travel. I found myself back at Greenville College, this time as an online instructor in the Master’s program. Currently I work as an online instructor at University of Illinois/Springfield. I thoroughly enjoy my job as I help other instructors make the adjustment from face-to-face teaching to online educators. Best of all, my job travels when I need to travel.
The career and theme of education has been important to me. Scholarly learning about the Bible opened a depth of faith that has been a life-long study. The more I learn, the more I want to learn, and the less I realize I know. The teaching methods learned as I prepared for a career in education have changed drastically. Content learned at all three universities is valuable, but what I learned at LCU is used daily. I feel fortunate to have been a student to professors who were willing to share their great knowledge and faith with befuddled students like me who were trying to find their way in the world. Their compass is now my guide.