User:Amy Jo Garner
|Employer:||Central Oklahoma College, Amy Jo Art & Design Studio|
|Occupation:||Artist, Gardener, Educator|
Amy Jo Garner is a writer, educator, and artist with a passion for bringing joy to people’s lives. She believes in creativity over conformity and has developed a knack for blending tech, analytical, and people skills to find creative solutions to all kinds of problems. She has used her creative skills to design and edit publications for a non-profit, analyze inventory and budget data on multi-million dollar contracts, create and sell her own art and books, teach at the vocational and community college level, and help adults unmask their own creative talents. She holds a Master of Arts in Journalism from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry from Northwest Nazarene University. In addition, she has extensive studies in adult education and positive psychology.
- Adult education
- Online education
- Open source initiatives
- Fiber Arts
- Mixed Media
My Website, blog and contact particulars
You can follow me at these sites:
Professional Interests My interest in open educational resources stems from my passion for education and, particularly, from my passion for working with a demographic of adult students who generally do not attend traditional 2- or 4-year colleges. I have been working in the vocational education field since 2003 in a variety of roles: instructor, placement director, and, now, director of education. I believe in the value of lifelong learning, and I want to see access to education extended to all who seek it, regardless of location and finances.
Academic Experience As an undergraduate, I majored in English and Theatre. I went straight into graduate school to earn a Master’s in Journalism. My choice in majors has served me well over the years. I have used my writing and communication skills to excel in a variety of industries and positions. One constant in both my academic experience and my work life has been my love of learning and of helping others learn. As a result, in 2008, I earned a Master’s in Religion with a concentration in Pastoral Ministry. I studied adult education at the doctoral level.
All of this background has made me a better instructor in the classroom and a better coach and mentor for my faculty. It has given me the communication skills and the insight to work with diverse groups of people in a wide range of circumstances.
Work/Other Experience I have edited publications for a non-profit, analyzed inventory and budget data on multi-million dollar contracts, sold real estate, and run a small business. I have been able to mix tech, analytical, and people skills with success. When I decided to leave the corporate world in 2002, I wanted to write and teach; I sold real estate to help make those two goals possible. Once I settled into the education field, I never looked back. I know that my talents are best used in situations where I can help students and staff members realize their goals. I bill myself as an artist, gardener, and educator and am focused on readers, students, and seekers.
Personal Qualities When I think about personal qualities that contribute to my success, three phrases come to mind: positive attitude, open-minded, and life-long learner. I am not certain “optimist” is always the right word, but I am a person who believes that a positive attitude can carry me through even some of life’s most difficult situations. I have also found that having a negative attitude consumes more energy and produces fewer results. Positivity rules the day for me.
I consider myself open-minded because I enjoy meeting and interacting with people from all walks of life. I find that this is especially important in the classroom and believe it is counter-productive to make assumptions about a student’s ability to succeed based on how he or she looks or acts when first coming onto our campus. By being open-minded, I can respect students as the person they are at that moment and mentor them to stretch for goals they may think are beyond their reach.
Finally, I am a life-long learner. My mother once commented that I “never could stop my mind from learning.” I am curious about a wide range of topics and frequently pile up books and magazines on a particular topic so I can learn more. This trait has made it possible for me to hold conversations about topics that are outside my concentrated areas of expertise. As a result, this enhances my ability to effectively communicate with students and staff.