Having been involved in education all her life, Lynn Southerland has carried on a family calling. Her grandmother taught in a one-room schoolhouse in 1909, and her mother taught Latin over twenty years.
Ms. Southerland received an English degree from The University of Georgia, adding Reading Specialist at the master’s degree level. She later joined the faculty at Middle Georgia College to teach reading in the University System’s newly formed Developmental Studies Program. Other teaching positions included Thomson and Eatonton, Georgia, and Georgia College in Milledgeville. During a brief “retirement” to be at home with her two small sons, she remained a teacher—teaching Sunday School, tutoring kindergarteners in reading, and preparing high school students for the SAT.
In 1983 Ms. Southerland returned to work, this time at Mercer University counseling at-risk students and teaching study skills. Four years later she joined the faculty at Middle Georgia Technical Institute—now Middle Georgia Technical College—teaching and serving as at-risk student specialist. It was during that first week that the school became part of the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education.
Over her 18-year tenure, Ms. Southerland has taught English, math, psychology, reading, and employability skills. Today her focus is English composition, business English, and reading.
In 1988 Wynette Ginn and Ms. Southerland, realizing a unique opportunity for students, proposed that MGTI become a part of the National Vocational-Technical Honor Society. Initially the induction of members was a brief Honor Ceremony held during breakfast, but it gradually evolved into Awards Day, which today includes a celebration of all student, faculty, and staff achievements. Over the past 17 years, a number of other faculty have shared in advising the Society, but Ms. Southerland remained at the helm before stepping down in September to become General Education Division Chair.
Ms. Southerland is a member of several professional organizations, and she has served the college in numerous ways, including editor of COC and COE documents and membership on the Retention and other committees.
She is an elder at Northminster Presbyterian Church, where she is has been involved in teaching and coordinating education programs for over 20 years, and currently serves as Education Chair of the Community Service Guild of Macon. She lives in Macon with her husband Steve and is the mother of Wilson, a vocal coach and accompanist in New York, and Tone, a programmer in Nashville, who along with his wife Andrea are rearing her one-year old granddaughter Madelyne.