Macon State College MVPs is a web feature that profiles notable students, alumni, faculty and staff.
Full Name: Laila J. Richman.
Residence: Warner Robins.
Originally From: Anniston, Ala. “But I only lived there for two years. I also lived in New Jersey, Saudi Arabia, Texas and Kansas before moving to Georgia.”
Family: Husband, Dr. Allen Richman (who also teaches at Macon State), and children Jasmine, Alex and Drew. “We also have a dog, Alfie, a cat, Pandora, and a chinchilla, Darcy.”
Job Title: Assistant professor of education.
Degrees: Bachelor of science in education; master of science in special education and doctorate of philosophy in special education, all from the University of Kansas.
Year she joined the Macon State faculty: 2005.
Some of her teaching career highlights are … "Graduating our inaugural class in the School of Education. The students taught me so much my first year and we all grew together. It has been a tremendous opportunity to build a program from the ground up and it is so rewarding to see our graduates out in the schools making a difference for their own students. They have made us all proud.”
She enjoys teaching at Macon State College because of … “The sense of community that faculty and students feel. As faculty, we are able to get to know our students and to learn more about their aspirations. Our students share their lives and families with us and stay in touch after graduation. Our graduates are appreciative of the education they receive at Macon State and often communicate their gratitude and successes with us as they embark on their new careers.”
Her favorite course to teach is … “ ‘Organizing an Effective Learning Environment.’ This is a course about setting up your classroom and getting it ready for your students. I can still remember that excitement and sheer panic that come with this as a first-year teacher. I enjoy sharing strategies with them that will truly set them up for a successful school year.”
One thing people don’t know about Macon State is … “How quickly it is growing. Macon State has almost doubled the number of bachelor degrees available since I arrived in August 2005, less than four years ago. More importantly, each of these degrees has been carefully developed to meet a specific need in the Middle Georgia area, too.
One thing people don’t know about her is … “I used to drive a school bus. I still have my commercial driver’s license. I swore I would never let it expire after having to take that driving test!”
In her spare time she likes to … “Spend time with my kids. We love to dance to loud music and play at the beach. ”
The one person she’d most like to meet is … “Barack Obama. In addition to being the first African American President, he is an interesting and unique individual. I think he has a lot to teach us about ourselves and about our future as a democracy.”
If she wasn’t a college professor she would be … “A travel show host because I love to visit new places, meet new people and eat great food!”