"I feel that foreign language education plays a very important role in helping students to not only communicate in a foreign language, but also to better appreciate and have some understanding of different ways of looking at the world." Sally Copps, Spanish Assistant Professor, earned an M.A. in Spanish from Florida State University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and History from Stetson University. She has taught both Spanish and ESL for fifteen years at the University of Georgia, FSUS, Leon County Community and Adult Education, and the American Cultural Center in Madrid, Spain. Ms. Copps has also taught Spanish classes as an adjunct at TCC. She is married with two children, ages 17 and 13. "Few subjects are as intimidating to a college student as chemistry. I strive to make the subject more approachable and understandable by showing them how chemistry is a part of every day life. If a student can see this, they can develop a true appreciation of this central science." Anthony Dribben, Chemistry Assistant Professor, received a Bachelors Degree in Chemistry from Mississippi College and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Florida. Following a one-year stint as a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Missouri, he returned to Mississippi College where he taught inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, and biochemistry for the past seven years. Twice named to "Who's Who Among America's Teachers", Dr. Dribben has also been an active member of the American Chemical Society. In his free time, he enjoys photography, travel and watching sports. At home, Anthony and his wife, Tracey, can frequently be found enjoying "high tea" and "Cinderella" with their two daughters, Julia (age 4) and Anna Grace (age 1). "Good instructors teach from what they know and enjoy. The enthusiasm that an instructor generates will carry over to the students because enthusiasm is contagious. If an instructor doesn't care, why should the students?" Bill Ebbesen, English Assistant Professor, is a proud product of the community college system, graduating from Bay de Noc Community College in Escanaba, Michigan with an Associate of Arts degree. He transferred to Northern Michigan University in Marquette, and completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Secondary English Education. He has several years experience teaching English with junior and senior high school students in the public school system, during which he also completed his Master of Arts degree in English at Northern Michigan University. Bill has taught at Bay College as an adjunct in the English department. Most recently, he taught English as a Foreign Language to Thai students, at the Sirindhorn International Institute of Technology at Thammasat University in Thailand. Some of his interests include reading and writing, tennis and bowling, traveling, computers and especially music. "The noted 20th Century photographer, Ruth Bernhard, once commented that 'a teacher is like a gardener... you only teach what is already inside someone' As a teacher of creative forming, I've come to understand that comment to mean that it is my job to give students the skills and provide the framework within which they can tap into that unique creative self and find their own visual voices. As an artist myself, I see teaching as an integral part of my life in art and find that it is a reciprocal relationship - on many levels my students teach me as much as I teach them." Barbara Edwards, Art Assistant Professor, holds a B.A. in Fine Art from the University of South Florida and a Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art from Florida State University. She has taught photography as an adjunct instructor at TCC since 1986. She was awarded a State of Florida Individual Artist Fellowship in 1999. She has been an exhibiting artist since 1979, most recently showing in the invitational exhibition, "Cracker: Rethinking the American South" at NURTUREart Gallery in Brooklyn, New York. She is currently at work planning an exhibition with invited former TCC photo students titled "Cut Cords: Photo Babies Come Home" to be held in the TCC Art Gallery in October 2005. "I hope to encourage my students to set their own goals and create a desire in them to want to learn and maximize their potential. I believe that learning should be fun and exciting, and that life long learning allows the individual to grow, both academically and personally. There is no such thing as a 'cookie cutter' approach to engaging and interacting with students. I respect and appreciate the individuality of my students and welcome the challenge of making the language of mathematics understandable to all." Rebecca Gubitti, College Preparatory Mathematics Assistant Professor, completed her undergraduate work in mathematics and received a Master's Degree in Mathematics Education at Florida State University. Currently, she is working on a Doctoral Degree in Math Education at the University with a focus on adult learning strategies. Her teaching/training experience has been in both the private and public sector and includes positions within the Department of Defense, State Government, Florida State University and a specialty school for students with dyslexia. She began her career at TCC as an adjunct instructor and remained for over ten years in the mathematics department. She fell in love with the atmosphere of community and service that the College has to offer its diverse population. "Teaching is an art. It is a special gift to give to students who come to the learning environment from different cultural backgrounds and learning styles. My goal as a teacher is not only to impart knowledge but also to gain knowledge from my students so that I can make a difference." Leslie Harper, College Preparatory Reading/Student Success Assistant Professor, received the Education Specialist and Master of Science Degrees in Reading/Language Arts from Florida State University and the Bachelor of Science Degree in Early Childhood/Elementary Education from Florida A&M University. Mrs. Harper has taught elementary and ABE/GED classes. Additionally, she has taught preparatory reading at Hillsborough Community College in Tampa, Florida, and Albany State University in Albany, Georgia. She comes to Tallahassee Community College from the Leon County School System where she served as a District Reading Coach. Her experience makes her very knowledgeable working with students in the Academic Support Program. Some of her organizational memberships include the International Reading Association, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and the Links Incorporated. Leslie enjoys reading and traveling. She is married to Derry Harper and has two children and four stepchildren. "I became a nurse when my children were teenagers. I can truly appreciate the challenges that adult learners face when they decide to pursue their own career interests while balancing family responsibilities. I believe that students bring their own world of experience to the classroom and that I can learn from them, just as they learn from me." Martha Onate, Nursing Assistant Professor, graduated from an Associate degree nursing program at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. Since she already had her Bachelor's degree, she was able to pursue her MSN degree very soon after graduating with the AAS degree. Martha completed her Master's in community mental health nursing at the University of South Alabama in Mobile and went back several years later to complete a post-master's certificate program in gerontological nursing. I have always enjoyed working with older adults and do some volunteer counseling with older members of my church. I also love to read. Harry Potter is a favorite! In addition, I love seeing plays and attending concerts of both classical and popular music. "My objective in college instruction is to have the student leave the course with not only an appreciation for the topic, but also with more facility of thought about the subject." Frederick Owens, Humanities Assistant Professor, received a Bachelors Degree in English and Communication, and a Master's Degree in Humanities from Florida State University. He is currently working on a Doctorate degree in Humanities at FSU with an emphasis on modern literature. Mr. Owens taught as a teaching assistant at FSU, and began teaching part-time at TCC in the spring of 2005. His favorite pastimes are writing and playing basketball. "I feel it is important to help the students recognize that what they are learning about our past is important in their lives today and will continue to help them understand their world tomorrow." Jarrett Phipps, History/Anthropology Assistant Professor, earliest career goal was that of being a history teacher. She has always enjoyed learning about people and events of the past because of what it teaches us about who we are now. Her studies in Anthropology have greatly augmented her understanding of history and it's impact on our society and culture today. She is blessed to have a love and talent for teaching. Jarrett earned a Masters degree in History from Florida State University and continued her education in history and Cultural Anthropology in the last few years. She has taught as a sabbatical replacement in Upstate New York, as an adjunct at Tallahassee Community College and at John Paul II Catholic High School. She always looks forward to finding time to read just for fun. She loves to learn new things and is trying to learn how to knit right now, but mostly she enjoys being with her family. Jarrett is married to Roark James and has two wonderful step children, Benton 13 and Kelsey 11. "My goal as an educator is to teach academic content as well as help develop nurturing, respectful, individuals capable of making a significant difference in the world. I seek to help students believe in the goodness within themselves and to learn to have faith in their academic ability." Deborah Schaum, College Preparatory Reading/Student Success Assistant Professor, received her Master's degree in Reading and Adult Literacy Education from Antioch University McGregor. She is currently working on her PhD in Education at FSU. Deborah comes to us from FSU and the Florida Center of Reading Research where she served as a Technical Assistance provider for teachers, reading coaches, and principals of Reading First schools throughout the eastern region of the United States. Deborah is a native Texan. In Texas she served as a full time instructor in Curriculum and Instruction. She is certified in the states of Florida and Texas in the areas of Reading, Mathematics, Special Education, ESOL, Middle School and Elementary Education. She and her husband Jeff have 2 children, Alexandria (12) and Chase (9). "I believe that a strong background in mathematics will not only serve our students well in their careers but in their entire lives. By teaching them not only the 'how' but also the 'why' of math, I hope to give them the knowledge and understanding to achieve their maximum potential." Jim Smart, Math Assistant Professor, received both his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in mathematics at the University of Florida. He began his teaching career in the Peace Corps, serving in Malawi and Kenya, and in the New Orleans public school system. He has also taught at the P. K. Yonge Developmental Research School at the University of Florida and at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville. Having taught courses from the middle school to the university level, Mr. Smart most enjoys the joys and challenges of teaching community college students. The variety of students found in a single location is unmatched in any other setting, and they each bring something unique and valuable to the classroom. In addition to teaching, Mr. Smart enjoys the outdoors, particularly cycling, hiking, and kayaking, and finds Tallahassee an ideal location to enjoy all of these. "I see myself as a storyteller and scholar, dedicated to presenting History in ways that make the information memorable, relevant and engaging. I genuinely respect my students, and am committed to empowering them on their journey to academic and professional success." Melissa Soldani Lemon, History Assistant Professor, earned a Ph.D. from FSU, an M.A. from University of Colorado at Boulder, and a BA from Loyola University, New Orleans. All of her degrees are in history with concentrations on Immigration/Ethnic History, Women's History and Latin American History. She taught History as an adjunct at TCC from 1995 to 2002, when she moved to Fort Lauderdale to become Director of a non-profit that dedicated itself to fighting bias, bigotry and discrimination. While in Fort Lauderdale, Dr. Soldani-Lemon taught History courses at St. Thomas University, Nova Southeastern University, and Broward Community College. Outside of the classroom, Dr. Soldani-Lemon is an avid reader and published essayist. She and her husband Charles Lemon are parents of Zoe Maria (4) and Zachary Charles (1). "I always wanted to be a Dental Hygienist, and I remember the people who encouraged me. As an educator, I also have the wonderful opportunity to contribute to the success of each of my students.." Virginia (Ginny) Wagner, Dental Hygiene Assistant Professor, has been an Adjunct Instructor in the Dental Health Programs since 1994. She completed her Dental Hygiene training at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1976, and my Bachelor of Health Science at UF in 1986. She worked as a dental hygienist in private practice from 1976 until 1996. During her association with TCC, she has taught Embryology & Oral Histology, General & Oral Pathology, Pain Control, Nitrous Oxide Sedation, Community Dental Health, Preclinical Dental Hygiene Theory & Lab, Clinical Dental Hygiene I, Clinical Dental Hygiene I Theory, and has assisted in Radiology Lab, Dental Anatomy Lab, Office Emergencies Lab, Dental Materials Lab, Clinical Dental Hygiene II, and Clinical Dental Hygiene III. When she is not working, she spends her time with her 16 year old son, Danny, serves in the Women's Ministry at Meridian Woods Church of Christ, and reads almost anything.
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