Meet Dean of Education Randy Johnson: Helping Students Succeed
Published on March 11, 2014 by Bob Trewartha
Ladies and gentlemen, introducing Broadview University-Orem’s brand new Dean of Education Randy Johnson! Randy has been with Broadview University as an instructor, campus director and career services director working with students in every program from business to veterinary technology. I had the opportunity to ask Randy a couple questions so we could all get to know him a little better.
What is your educational background?
I received two degrees from Brigham Young University: an undergraduate in family relations and a master’s degree in sociology. I then earned doctorate in Sociology/Gerontology from the University of Washington in Seattle, and finally did two year’s post-doctoral research/teaching at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio (where, incidentally, I was awarded the Undergraduate Instructor of the Year Award…pretty proud of that one).
Tell me a little about your experience?
Early on, the plan was to be a traditional college professor….teaching classes, doing cutting-edge behavioral research, etc. But, the universe had a much different plan in mind!
I have worked for local, state and federal government organizations. I’ve also worked for quasi-governmental organizations, partnering with educational institutions. I’ve held adjunct teaching positions for almost every major college/university in northern Utah (Weber State University and Westminster College are the exceptions). I also directed a countywide hospital district at one time. But, throughout my career, I’ve always had a hand in education, in some form or another. Seems I was destined to either be teaching a lesson or learning one!
Do you have any advice for new students?
The most difficult thing about going to school at Broadview is going to school. You have to have your butt in the chair. Attendance is critical to success, and life will do everything it can to keep you out of class. But, those who attend, graduate.
Any advice for students on working with program chairs, registration, or interfacing with education?
As with any other aspect of life in general, you get out of it what you put into it. This applies to a person’s education as well. When working with program chairs (PCs) to identify an externship, for example, it is always best to contact the PC before going directly to the office/organization you want to work with. The PCs are very busy people, and although they will work hard to help students succeed, it is best to work with their schedules.
As far as registration, it is always in the student’s best interest to register for a full-time course load. It takes more time and effort in the short-term, but the benefits pay off. Full-time students graduate faster, they have a much higher graduation rate, and they borrow less money in student loans than part-time students. I often tell students, “I love having you here, but I want you gone, with a degree, and out making money!” Taking a full-time course-load is the key.
Why do you think education is so important?
I have met very few “trust-fund kids” in my travels….and without those kinds of resources, the only leveler of the playing field is education. There will always be the outlier examples of self-made million/billionaires who are proud of the fact they didn’t get a college degree….but you can count those on two hands and not use all the fingers. The vast majority of us—if we wish to provide for a family, live a relatively comfortable life, or retire and realize some lifelong dreams—must have a college education to begin with. It opens doors that would, otherwise, remain closed. Education enables an individual to think differently, broader and more globally than someone who doesn’t have the advantage of such training and experience.
Randy has been a leader at Broadview University for several years and we hope he will continue to bring his wry wit, infectious smile and passion to help the students for many years to come.
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