Patricia A. Smith

Patricia A. SmithHome economics, human development, education

Coming from a small town in the sandhills, I had a lot to learn about the world. UNL was a welcoming and safe place to find myself and learn how to develop skills I would use throughout life. I set out on a path of lifelong learning. I lived in Loomis Hall, a University house, as there weren't dorms yet on East Campus. For over 60 years I have enjoyed the friendship of the other girls who lived there. Those of us that are able continue to keep in touch and get together whenever possible.
I worked for the Cooperative Extension Service in six different states, first as a home economist, and then as a youth development specialist with responsibilities for curriculum development for 4-H Clubs. I came back to UNL twice after my B.S. degree, and held positions while acquiring on a Masters degree, and then a Ph.D. It was satisfying work that allowed me to live in several places across the country while working with many different groups of people.
UNL provided me the education and experience to get my first professional job with UNL Extension in Nebraska, and then continued to be a part of my life as I updated my skills and became more focused. Some of the people I met there were supportive and continued to be mentors and coworkers over time. The classes I took and people I met helped me achieve professionally, but also were meaningful in my personal life. After retiring, I returned to Lincoln and now enjoy some of the University resources in our community.
That time at UNL is what you make of it. You may use the time and resources wisely to further your future life plan. Any educational institution requires a person to interact with it positively in making good choices toward achieving your desired impact.
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