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Instructors take classes to improve skills

By Juana Jones
On December 3, 2018

Instructors play a major part in the lives of students. From the time a child starts school in Kindergarten teachers take an active role to help inspire students to learn. 

However, instructors often learns just as much from their students as the students do from them. In addition to this some instructors go further and take classes during their free time to increase their understanding and knowledge of other fields. 

Two such instructors at  Kirkwood Community College are Bobby Wade and Judith Wightman.  

Bobby Wade became an instructor after being asked by Jeff Michael, the previous dean of Industrial Technologies, to interview. 

According to Wade, “I never thought I would get the position but then when they called me and gave the job offer, I just took it.” 

Prior to accepting the job Wade already had extensive knowledge and experience in an industrial environment as well as 12 years in the military doing mechanical based work.  

Wade also stated that, “Field experience when teaching industrial technologies courses is probably the most important because experience can be passed to your students.” 

Currently Wade is taking Intro to Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) alongside the very same students he teaches. 

Wightman currently teaches psychology at Kirkwood. She said, “I first taught psychology during graduate school as a teaching assistant. I loved it and returned to it part-time at Kirkwood while working another job. When an opening appeared for a full-time instructor, I realized that I would enjoy teaching as a career. I have been a full-time faculty member at Kirkwood since fall of 2006.” 

Since becoming an instructor, she has taken many classes, most of which are in the healthcare field. 

But, she said she has also taken classes such as Fundamentals of Oral Communication, Statistics and Introduction to Computers.  

Wightman also said that the perks of taking classes are “learning new things, enriching your work life and personal life, connecting with students in a new way, getting to know colleagues you might not have met otherwise, making new friends among your classmates and possibly earning another degree.”  

Kirkwood Instructor Bobby Wade is taking a PLC class so that he may later teach the class. 
Photo by Juana Jones.


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