Friday, March 29, 2019

Women's History Month Spotlight: Dr. Emily Short



Dr. Emily Short, vice president of Student Services, has been an employee of the college for going on 28 years, but she was once in your shoes as a student. 1983 was the year her Vol State journey began. She studied business and finished her degree at what was Belmont College at the time before switching career paths.

“I did my business degree because that’s what my mother encouraged me to do, but I’ve always wanted to be in a helping profession really. So in my heart of hearts, I knew that.”

While attending graduate school at Western Kentucky University to pursue an education in counseling, she had contemplated where she’d complete her practicum that was required for her degree. One day she drove by Vol State on her way to Nashville; she saw a literal sign that would open the door for her career here.

“I was driving by the college one day and I was a semester behind on getting my practicum done. I just saw the sign, the marquee, and thought, ‘you know, I’ll just call them and see if they’ve got some kind of counseling practicum that they can offer me,’” she said.

She called and was offered an internship that would jumpstart her career. From working in Financial Aid to Admissions, Emily worked her way up into the position she's in now.

“I’ve had a very fulfilling career here, I’ve done a number of different things, I’ve always enjoyed working here and enjoyed the people I’ve worked with … I’ve been allowed to grow up here. It’s been one of the better experiences of my life.”

Emily said that her career has not only educated her, but has been therapy for herself along the way.

“Through earning my education, I think I learned how to appreciate where I’m from, I think I learned how to appreciate where I’m going, and to appreciate the people that I come in contact with all along the way.”

She said she still looks forward to getting up and coming to work every day. “Just being here on campus, being with the students, being with the staff, I just enjoy it.”

Emily is a Tennessee Promise mentor in her hometown of Westmoreland, Tennessee. She’s on the committee for Sumner County’s Habitat for Humanity and recently began working with Unlimited Potential, a community development corporation. She met her husband over 24 years ago during his last day as a Vol State student. They’ve been together ever since and have two children that she called her “greatest personal accomplishment.” Emily aims to remain at Vol State for the rest of her career.

-By Rachel Keyes

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