First-Year Faculty Experience – Athens State University

Mentoring in Higher Education for Faculty & Academic Staff

November 15, 2019
Athens State University

An Athens State University faculty mentor is an experienced and trusted faculty member who works with a first-year faculty member (a.k.a., protégé) participating in the First-Year Faculty Experience.  A faculty mentor serves as an available resource, a supportive and friendly guide, a respectful advocate and an active listener for the protégé.

The Athens State University First-Year Faculty Experience will become a culture of mentoring faculty members culminating in the long-term success of all faculty members who have participated in the program.

The program provides a supportive framework for its new faculty members (protégés) to achieve success by strategically assigning mentors to protégés leading to a professionally trusting relationship.  Moreover, the First-Year Faculty Experience offers opportunities for protégés to interact across academic departments, colleges and other university units through engaging, collaborative, informational sessions and workshops.

Program Goals

  1. To help new faculty members acclimate to the Athens State academic, administrative and physical environments.
  2. To understand the meaning and the execution of effective teaching at Athens State University
  3. To foster a relationship with a faculty mentor that should be free from scrutiny, creating a relationship in which a new faculty member has a sense of discretion when sharing concerns regarding general or specific aspects of the academic appointment
  4. To provide a forum through which new faculty members discuss how to promote student success
  5. To assist in the retention of good faculty members
  6. To establish a sense of camaraderie among the new faculty members across colleges and appreciation for members of the staff and administration
  7. To educate new mentors about the mentoring process
  8. To establish a desire among faculty to serve as a mentor or serve multiple times as a mentor.

Contact Information
Ronald L. Merritt, Jr., Ph.D.
Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of Mathematics
Phone: 256-233-6527

Members of the 2018-19 FYFE Cohort

New Faculty MemberTitleFaculty Mentor
Dr. Chet BreauxDr. Chet Breaux
Director of the Writing Center and Assistant Professor of English
College of Arts and Sciences
Prof. Debra Vaughn
College of Business
Dakota CottonProfessor Dakota Cotton
University Archivist
Prof. Mary Aquila
Jamie GilbertDr. Jamie Gilbert
Assistant Professor Health and Physical Performance
College of Education
Dr. Wendy Cowan
College of Education
Gary HuckabyDr. Gary Huckaby
Assistant Professor of Management
College of Business
Dr. John Berzett
College of Business
Christopher NelsonProfessor Christopher Nelson
Instructor of Accounting
College of Business
Dr. Kim Roberts
College of Business
Shannon PittmanDr. Shannon Pittman
Assistant Professor of Biology
College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Sara Cline
College of Arts and Sciences
Crystal RustProfessor Crystal Rust
Visiting Instructor of Mathematics
College of Arts and Sciences
Prof. Patsy Glaze
College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Timothy ThorntonDr. Timothy Thornton
Assistant Professor Career and Technical Education
College of Education
Dr. Bridgette Chandler
College of Education
Jacki VadneyProfessor Jacki Vadney
Assistant Professor of Drama and Theater Arts
College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Mary Beth Johns
College of Arts and Sciences