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Strong Stories: Sheree Sheppard

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HometownFayetteville, N.C. Degree Class of 2006
A.A. in Liberal Studies
Class of 2008
B.S. in Biology

Sheree Sheppard

Environmental Health Specialist, Glynn County Environmental Health

What did you love most about Armstrong and why? 
Because when I started my collegiate career at the Liberty Center in Hinesville, I was welcomed by a close-knit community of faculty and staff. Because of caring staff like Mrs. Kempson and Ms. Douglas, Iwas encouraged to continue my education past my A.A. in Liberal Studies. 
As I continued to progress and transition into the biology degree program at Armstrong’s main campus, I was welcomed by a new group of faculty and staff who carried on that strong sense of community. This was essential to my development as a student. 
From professors like Dr. Zettler and Dr. Collier who scheduled time to help with answering questions pertaining to problems/concepts to professors like Dr. Craven who gave me opportunities to work on research projects. Professors like these opened doors of opportunities that I wouldn’t have experienced anywhere else. 
I love how truly genuine and caring the faculty and staff are at both campuses.

How did Armstrong help you succeed in your field? 
Where do I begin? 
I was an Armstrong employee for four years following my graduation. I was a math tutor, biology tutor, biology lab technician and a biology lab instructor for the Liberty Center Campus. 
These positions gave me the essential skills and experience needed to not only obtain the position I hold today, but also to carry out various tasks/skills needed for my position. I was truly blessed to have been given the opportunity to work in so many fields with Armstrong.

Who was your favorite professor and why? 
Hands down: Dr. Mary Rebecca Wells. She was my first biology professor (BIOL 1107) at Armstrong’s main campus. 
I was uncertain if I could continue to pursue my degree in biology considering I was a commuter student and a working single mother. 
Dr. Wells’ class was challenging, but it sparked something within me. Her motivation, her spitfire personality and her genuine concern for her students encouraged me to continue my degree. 
I truly thank her for her compassion for her students, and her passion for biology truly blessed me.

Why did you decide to attend Armstrong? 
Armstrong was honestly ideal for my work schedule and the fact that I am a single mother. Class schedules fit perfectly between my work schedule and spending quality time with my daughter.

What is your favorite memory of your time at Armstrong? 
I honestly do not have one favorite memory, I have a list of favorite memories! From winning third place in the 2008 Student Research Symposium for “Amelanism/Malformations in Loggerhead Sea Turtle Populations” to spending four days on St. Catherine’s Island with my Primate Ecology/Social Behavior class studying the ring-tailed lemur population…so many great memories!!!!

Did you do any extracurricular activities and/or internships that were particularly memorable? 
I was a member and officer of the Biology Club, which was a great experience.  
I completed an internship in 2008 at Oatland Island Wildlife Center, which was AMAZING! From prepping the food for various animals (i.e. wolves, bears, cows, goats and the list goes on) to helping with enrichment activities with the animals housed at the facility. It was hard work, but it was a great experience.

What is your best advice to current Armstrong students? 
Don’t give up!! 
I was not a traditional student coming straight out of high school. I attended Armstrong as a twenty-something single mother. There were some rough times, but I persevered…and you can too! There are going to be classes that may seem tough, but do not give up! 
Connect with students not only within your degree program, but students in other programs as well! Form study groups! Be active! 
Bond! A lot of the bonds that you build with students, staff and faculty are life-long and are truly worth building!

Why are you proud to be an Armstrong alum? 
Simple...Armstrong is family. From the Liberty Center campus to the main campus from the faculty to the staff...every working part to the Armstrong whole is family! I love Armstrong!!