This week, we are featuring Dr. Michael Everett, a Professor of Practice, Adviser, and Internship Coordinator within MSU’s Department of Community Sustainability. Dr. Everett was recognized via iteach.msu.edu's Thank and Educator Initiative! We encourage MSU community members to nominate high-impact Spartan educators (via our Thank an Educator form) regularly!
Read more about Dr. Everett’s perspectives below. #iteachmsu's questions are bolded below, followed by their responses!
You were recognized via the Thank an Educator Initiative. In one word, what does being an educator mean to you?
Change Agent (Two words – sorry).
Share with me what this word/quality looks like in your practice?
The goal is to help students become change agents or individuals who consistently have a goal of bettering themselves and those around them. As I continue to develop as an educator, I want students to leverage all opportunities inside the classroom to become better individuals through the products they develop (cognitive development, CV and assignments that can be used in conversational settings).
Tell me more about your educational “setting.” This can include, but not limited to departmental affiliations, community connections, co-instructors, and students. (Aka, where do you work?)
I reside in the Department of Community Sustainability where I teach courses in non-profit organizational management and issues and policies in environmental and sustainability film. I also work collaboratively with other teacher educators focused on developing future Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Education (AFNRE) teachers. I am also in several administrative roles including Associate Chair, Undergraduate Coordinator, and AFNRE MA program coordinator.
What is a challenge you experience in your educator role?
Creating an environment where students find value in engaging in class.
Any particular “solutions” or “best practices” you’ve found that help you support student success at the university despite/in the face of this?
I try to create an uplifting and exciting time while in the classroom. I consistently tell students that I am “so happy to be here” and “isn’t this exciting, what a great day to be a Spartan” as a way to foster excitement and enthusiasm in the classroom.
What are practices you utilize that help you feel successful as an educator?
Trying to be flexible and willing to go the “extra mile” while being firm on requirements.
What are you looking forward to (or excited to be a part of) next semester?
Next semester I will spend a fair amount of time writing up results from research conducted in the classroom. I consider the classroom a laboratory for learning how student learn. As such, I plan to write several manuscripts based on research data collected during courses that I am currently teaching (FS21).
Don't forget to celebrate individuals you see making a difference in teaching, learning, or student success at MSU with #iteachmsu's Thank an Educator initiative. You might just see them appear in the next feature!