Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Retirees reflect on time on Chillicothe Campus and their plans for the future


A reception was recently held for three long-time campus employees who are retiring – faculty members Ruth McClain and Hamid Shahrestani and staff member Patty Griffith. They shared some of their thoughts on their OU-C careers.

PATTY GRIFFITH

When did you first join OU-C?

I worked here from 1977-83; and 1988-present

What has kept you coming to work on a daily basis?

The students! I really love the interactions I have had with all of our students. They come from so many backgrounds, and have some amazing stories. Working with technology, I have always loved the challenges of learning new things. I have always found this exciting. I really love offering our Tech Tuesday sessions for faculty.

What are your plans for the future?

I have worked my entire life, raised my three daughters and I am really looking forward to having some time to do more things that I have always wanted to do. I intend to play more tennis, am learning to play golf, and I also want to do a few projects at home. Oh, and did I mention, I have two grandsons I hope to be able to visit more frequently. I am already scheduled to visit both of them. I have my airline ticket to go to Ireland with some friends which will be wonderful! My youngest daughter is now engaged, so I will be planning another wedding as well, this time, probably in Denver. I will be back in the fall doing some teaching. I am not ready to stop working totally, so I am excited to have this opportunity.

Any other thoughts?

After 30 years, I do have mixed feelings about leaving. Many here (past and present) have shared a lot with me in my life. I have gone through some pretty difficult times and some wonderful times. I am very thankful to all for the support that has been given to me. Our community is fortunate to have this campus here, and I am very thankful I had the opportunity to be a part of it! I will miss this place, but I believe the time is right for me to enter the next phase of my life.

RUTH McCLAIN

When did you first join OU-C?

After 38 years of public and private teaching, I came to OU-C in 2000 full time. I was an adjunct faculty member for several quarters before that. I'm finishing 50 years of teaching--where did the time go!!!

What has kept you coming to work on a daily basis?

The thing that I most enjoy about teaching is the research I do for class preparation. It's the digging deeply into the social, cultural, and historic elements of the literature that is exciting and then disseminating that information to students in a logical way so that they clearly understand. I could be quite content as a researcher for the rest of my life.

What are your plans for the future?

The question that people who retire are always asked is about future plans. It's an impossible one to answer. I'd prefer to say I'm just changing roles. I have no specific plans but just to take one day at a time and enjoy it. The only thing I know I do NOT want to do is grade student essays. I've enjoyed the years I spent at OU-C and the faculty and students with whom I have worked. Whatever the next phase of my life brings, I hope to enjoy it just as much.

HAMID SHAHRESTANI

When did you first join OU-C?

Dr. Shahrestani joined the OU-C faculty in 1982.

What has kept you coming to work on a daily basis?

The dynamic character of the University helped me to learn something new every day, and the success of my students is what I enjoyed the most.
What are your plans for the future?

I will be teaching and continue with my research interest.

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