Faculty providing support to students
April 27, 2020
This is the fifth submission in a series of employee spotlights for Ashland Community
and Technical College to highlight how faculty and staff are helping students while
Despite the change in delivery method, ACTC’s employees are dedicated to providing the best support possible to its students.
Name: Kathy Tucci Edwards (Kathryn)
City of Residence: Huntington, W.Va.
Education: Morris Harvey College/University of Charleston, 1973-1977– business administration hours (no degree, went to Marshall in 1978) (also worked full time while attending college); B.A. Sociology, 1981, with Minors in Religion, Psychology, Philosophy, Business-Marshall University / (also worked part time while attending college); M.A. Sociology, 1991, with Minors in Philosophy, Humanities, Political Science (I worked full and part time while attending college) I was also a graduate assistant and taught classes.
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: Professor; teaching sociology, philosophy, political science -interact through on campus, phone, before and after class, in office, hallways (before COVID-19) now as well as before: email, course messages, discussion boards, podcasts and Facebook.
How long have you been with ACTC? Adjunct instructor spring 1992-spring 1997, Interim Instructor 1997-1999 (contract), full time 1999/2000 – present day 2020 – so technically speaking 27 years
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? The students and colleagues (faculty and staff)
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? I usually let others speak to that – but I did teach at the federal pen for five years for ACTC back in the 1990s, and dual credit classes for the past six years, which I enjoyed as something different from the “norm.” I have also been teaching online since 2000!
How would your co-workers describe you? Helpful to students and colleagues whenever called upon, worker bee, outspoken.
Who is your biggest role model and why: My mother first and foremost-WWII nurse, nurse in hospital while growing up, businesswoman after the death of my father at age 62 (she ran his business until 84 years old), feminist, educated—loved me, encouraged me, and gave me many skills to be myself and with an open mind—tough but kind and fair. Former colleague: Matt Onion, (deceased 2019) past director of the library at ACTC – integrity, wit, intelligence – and of course several of my former college professors who shaped me intellectually and professionally and never gave up on me. All those who came before me in education at this college to help me be who I am today-thanks for believing in me and in ACTC.
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is… That I am demanding intellectually but fair minded, and I understand where many of them are coming from since I worked, had kids and went to college-“grace with high expectations academically.”
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? We are here for you in any fashion-the whole college. I have not really had to change much personally or professionally-and I have enjoyed working from home (it is quiet), as I have been an online professor since 2000 – and taught on campus, web assisted and hybrid classes since that time. I have always adhered to having all the work online for the whole semester in advance as a back-up plan for my on campus and hybrid students for the past 20 years-so not much has changed for me; for the on campus students a little changed for them having to be totally online—each week I email them and set announcements, discuss with them on discussion board, through emails, course messages, phone and also provide podcasts for them to help with understanding. Being home has helped me become more flexible and open. I want them to know I am here for them and will answer any and all questions or concerns they may have or send them to the person who knows. Fortunately, all my colleagues (faculty and staff) at the college have been available and prompt in responses and we are all working for the good of the students. We are stretching ourselves and learning new things from this experience which I think is good. More people are using SKYPE, ZOOM, Blackboard Collaborate, video and voice podcasts to communicate, which I think is helping us all. Thanks to all the colleagues and students who have faith in us, and we will work with any student if they need any of us!
Name: Ashley Skidmore
City of Residence: Ashland, Ky.
Education: Ashland Community College (2001-2002, no degree); University of Kentucky (Bachelor of Arts in English education, 2005; Master of Arts in English education, 2006)
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: Associate professor of English and academic advisor
How long have you been with ACTC? This is the end of my twelfth year!
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? The greatest part of being an English teacher is getting to share new thoughts and experiences each semester with my students.
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? I love seeing former students walk across the stage at graduation.
How would your co-workers describe you? They would probably say I’m quiet and a little eccentric, but I hope they also think of me as a dependable team player.
Who is your biggest role model and why: My parents are the type of kind, level-headed, hard-working people any person should strive to emulate. When I think of them, I’m reminded of Albus Dumbledore’s admonition about choosing, “between what is easy and what is right.”
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is… to live for your future self.
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? The best thing I can be for my students any time is available. If you’re my student or advisee, you can contact me anytime about anything. I’m also trying to be proactive by being the first to reach out to people who seem literally or figuratively disconnected right now. It’s a stressful time for everyone, and we all need communication and understanding.