ENMU retirees have fond memories

Staff report

Eastern New Mexico University released its list of 2014 retirees and with a few of its own moving on to “greener pastures” within the next month. Here are facts about the retiring university faculty members and their future plans:

Rayburn “Paul” Hayes
Information systems instructor

Family: I have a wife, Janice (a retired Clovis Community College instructor), and three children, Todd, Jennifer and Lacey, and four grandchildren.

I also have four dogs, all rescues, named Lexi, Buddy, Maggie and Peter Lugger.

Accomplishments at ENMU: I have no single accomplishment I can think of. I guess my greatest pride is in the fact that when students completed my course in basic computer skills, they left my class with much better computer skills and knowledge than when they entered my class. I feel I prepared them for the competitive world and job market they were about to enter.

Retirement plans: My wife and I plan on moving to Santa Fe this summer or fall and do a bunch of traveling. There is a lot of this country I want to see while I’m still standing upright. We also hope to continue to teach some online courses for ENMU.

The legacy he hopes to leave : My legacy at the (College of Business) is for my former students and peers to determine. I know I’ve had an impact on a large number of my former students and I feel it has been a positive impact. I’m just so grateful and lucky to have had the opportunity to have been a member of such a wonderful faculty.

 Favorite ENMU memory: What I do have is a memory of all those great and wonderful students who passed through my life over the years. I may not remember all their names, but I can still see all those faces. They all had such a wonderful impact on my life as well.

Sue Strickler
Professor of political science
Family:  My cat, Mollie, lets me live with her as long as I do her every bidding in a timely fashion.

Accomplishments at ENMU: My students and their accomplishments during their time with me and then after leaving ENMU, it gives me the greatest sense of accomplishment watching them learn and develop critical thinking skills while addressing complex and controversial issues within our field of political science.
5-2-Strickler-Mug-WebAlso, I take great, yet humble pride in teaching without them knowing my partisan identification—my goal was to teach and not preach, as my personal political position is not important—what is important was for us to academically wrestle with the issues with depth and breadth giving equal attention to the diverse views on issues while attempting to find the “best solutions” to social problems.

Retirement plans: I am moving home to California to be close to my family. My father was a state park ranger and I want to revisit many of the state parks we lived in across the state. I am the family genealogist and I am looking forward to having time to work on documenting all the many family connections.

The legacy she hopes to leave: My hope is that I have imparted a sense of enjoyment in the learning process, the need for civil discourse on politics, and the need to protect the academic integrity of the academy at ENMU.

Favorite ENMU memory: Wow, there are so many that it is hard to pick one but one event that I always loved doing was our Senior Appreciation Dragon Burrito party that we did every spring to honor our graduating seniors. I made a six-foot long burrito that the students just love and one of our students from China saw it and exclaimed, “It looks like a dragon.” From that moment on, it was the Dragon Burrito.

Mary Drabbs
Associate professor of health and physical education

Accomplishments at ENMU: Maintaining a degree with integrity, maintaining good relationships between faculty and athletics, and students successfully graduating.

5-2-Drabbs-Mug-WebRetirement plans: I am moving to Albuquerque. I will continue to teach for ENMU online as needed. I have scores of projects and I plan to have a small garden.

Legacy she hopes  to leave: I hope that my peers and students remember that I worked hard to help them. I’m too young to think about a legacy, but I hope that I have influenced people to do their best.

Favorite ENMU memory: I have too many memories to choose a favorite. I have witnessed athletic wins (and losses where the athletes played their best anyway), 33 graduations (soon to be 34), music and theater productions, and former students returning to fill teaching and coaching positions.

— Compiled by staff writer Alisa Boswell