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Alumnus Success: Michael Mudd ’97
Alumnus Success: Michael Mudd ’97
Michael Mudd '97
Randolph-Macon College alumnus
Michael Mudd ’97
is the principal at South Anna Elementary School in Hanover County, Virginia and an education professor at R-MC. Mudd learned the importance of networking when he was a student at R-MC, where he majored in
and minored in elementary
A Foundation for Success
Mudd participated in an independent study, co-authored and presented several publications, and studied abroad—all experiences that illustrated the power of connections.
“My independent study, on the topic of special-education inclusion—is an experience that ultimately led to my first teaching job, at Hanover County Public Schools,” says Mudd. “I observed and participated in a special-education inclusion classroom that included students with disabilities and non-disabled students. The experience helped me make connections with teachers and administrators and provided me with a strong foundation in my first year of teaching.”
For his culminating project, Mudd co-authored an article with his advisor and Education Professor Brenda Gilman. He also co-authored a proposal on inclusion in the public school classroom, which he presented at a symposium for educators in Williamsburg, Virginia.
“The experience as a presenter opened my eyes to the many different opportunities that were ahead of me and helped me to network with professionals throughout the state of Virginia,” recalls Mudd. He also made global connections, traveling during January Term (
) to Italy in conjunction with a religious studies course. “I remember traveling with students who, leading up to the trip, I only knew by name,” he says. “By the time we returned to campus I had developed many lasting relationships.”
Mudd was chosen Hanover County Beginning Teacher of the Year in 1998, and in 2002 he was chosen Henry Clay Elementary School Teacher of the Year. From 2003-2005 he served as assistant principal at Pearson’s Corner Elementary School and Pole Green Elementary in Hanover County. He was appointed principal of Beaverdam Elementary School in Hanover in 2005 and appointed Principal of South Anna in 2011. As principal, he manages a school of 645 students and roughly 100 staff members.
“I love what I do,” says Mudd. “I was well-prepared for my role as a teacher and principal as a result of my preparation at Randolph-Macon. The personal attention I received enabled me to fine-tune my skills as an educator, and the close connections I had with my professors continued beyond graduation and ultimately brought me back to R-MC in 2007 as an adjunct professor in the Education Department.”
Mudd is a member of the Education Department Alumni Board, which held its first meeting during Homecoming 2013. The Board’s theme, “
Connection, Communication, Collaboration
,” was evident throughout the weekend’s planned activities.
“It was a great way to reconnect with old friends while at the same time networking and brainstorming to identify the latest trends in teaching.” says Mudd. “As teachers we are constantly striving to improve our craft; it makes sense that the Education Department also wants to keep up with the latest trends in an effort to establish a cutting-edge program for future teachers. Connecting with alumni and looking at education through the eyes of the practicing education alumni makes great sense.”
Mudd is also excited about the college’s
Special Education track for Education minors
, which will be in place beginning in fall 2014. Students who successfully complete the Special Education track of the Education minor will be eligible to receive a Special Education, General Curriculum, K-12 license from the Virginia Department of Education.
“A liberal arts education from Randolph-Macon College gives students the attention they deserve,” says Mudd. “And this newest addition to the Education Department curriculum is a fantastic opportunity for students who want to go into teaching.”
Asked what advice he’d give to prospective Yellow Jackets, Mudd says, “If you are open to working closely with your professors, if you desire small class sizes, if you are looking to customize your education, if you are looking to challenge yourself, Randolph-Macon College is the place for you.”
Paving the Way for Success
Rather than prepare students for one career, Randolph-Macon College prepares students for a lifetime of careers in an ever-changing world. Exceptional faculty work with students to cultivate their ability to think critically and analytically and to find creative solutions for solving problems. R-MC graduates are well-prepared for successful careers, often far outside of their areas of study.
and Alumni Network
, the cornerstone of the
Center for Personal and Career Development
, helps Randolph-Macon students lead the pack when competing for jobs and top graduate schools. Students have the support of faculty, career coaches,
and staff as they focus on their personal and academic ambitions.
Students may choose to pursue paid or volunteer internships in a wide variety of settings. The
Bassett Internship Program
has been successfully placing students in academic internships both in the U.S. and around the globe for 30 years. Coordinated with the Center for Personal and Career Development, the program helps students identify their interests and matches them with an appropriate internship opportunity. Randolph-Macon’s alumni provide a strong network of support for students throughout their time at the college or in assisting them after graduation with career direction and opportunities.
The Four-Year Degree Guarantee
Four-Year Degree Guarantee
states in writing that freshmen who meet the Four-Year Degree Guarantee requirements will graduate within four calendar years. If not, Randolph-Macon will waive tuition costs for courses needed to complete the degree. Currently, 95 percent of R-MC graduates complete their degree in four years or less—an important value-added benefit for parents to consider when visiting colleges with their students.
programs offer students a beyond-the-classroom global perspective and opportunities to immerse themselves in other cultures. Students can choose from a host of travel courses during January Term and semester-abroad programs.
The Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (
) program gives students the opportunity to conduct 10 weeks of original research under the guidance of faculty mentors. Many students present their findings at national and international conferences
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