Sally Speed ’15
Sally Speed ’15
Adjunct Instructor/President of It’s A Natural Farm, Inc
SUNY Empire State College/self-employed
Why did you choose Empire State College? What do you think is the best thing about the college?
I started taking classes at ESC in the early 1990s because my work required frequent travel and prohibited attendance at regularly scheduled classes. I attended classes for about two years on a part time basis before having to leave college due to family issues. After a 20 year hiatus, I returned to complete a BS when my employment went from full time to part time and it looked like I might have to find a different job. I loved it so much – the flexibility, the connection to classmates and instructors, the sense of community – that once I completed my BS, I stayed on to complete my Masters. I currently teach part time at ESC so, even after graduating, I still am a part of this institution.
How did Empire State College help you shape your personal and professional goals?
I began my MA studies with clear goals – developing and credentialing my knowledge, skills, and abilities in adult learning (I spent 30 years conducting workforce development training). I also was very interested in the use of technology in learning. ESC offered courses that broadened and strengthen these goals and the flexibility inherent in the personalized degree plans allowed me to meet those goals more closely than colleges with more rigid course requirements for each degree.
What is your career highlight or proudest career moment to date?
Curriculum development has always been an interest of mine. This summer I’ve worked with another ESC faculty member to revisit and revise one of the undergraduate courses. This is the course I taught in the spring semester so my experience with students in the course was very current. I thoroughly enjoyed discussing students’ responses to the original course and the ways in which the course could be modified to improve learning. ironically, this is the first time I’ve worked on a curriculum located in Moodlerooms. Overall, it was a great experience and one that was consistent with my goals when I started my MA.
What advice would you give to a current Empire State College student?
Two pieces of advice; 1. Don’t give up!! I started college in 1973 and graduated with a BS in 2012 and a MA in 2015. Life intervenes but YOU can make a degree happen! 2. Take full advantage of the opportunities ESC offers. Work and family concerns will demand your time but to fully ‘reap what you’ve sown’ in attending ESC, one has to fully immerse oneself in the courses. Become a true life-long learner.