Introducing Heather Allen

Hi, my name is Heather Allen. I am currently pursuing a dual master’s degree in adult and community education and executive development for public service. I have a bachelor’s degree in communications/journalism, with minors in elementary education and English/creative writing.

At 45, my career has taken many turns, including retail management, corporate training, non-profit executive leadership, and human resources. I have also kept busy with side projects such as tutoring young children, freelance curriculum development, travel writing, and working part time as a CPR/first aid instructor with the American Red Cross, which I have done for 12 years.

Currently, I work full time at a small chain of local furniture stores as the fiscal/HR director. I also have a nonprofit start-up called Operation Rambo. We raise funds to help disabled veterans pay for medical expenses for their service animals. We are also raising and training dogs to donate to veterans who can’t afford the expense of the initial acquisition of an animal and the cost of training and certification.

I have a freelance writing and editing business, and, of course, I’m also a student. I will also be teaching kids’ summer camps at the local hands-on science museum. I volunteer with the local humane society and the local chapter of the American Association of University Women (AAUW). I am also a member of the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Association of Talent Development (ATD).

I live in beautiful southern Oregon with my husband of nearly 15 years, a very overweight kitty, and the world’s cutest labradoodle. I love travel, scrapbooking, and karaoke. 


Introducing Matt Davis

Hello, I’m Matt Davis. I received a bachelor’s degree in technology education and have been teaching for the last 11 years. I am currently pursuing Ball State’s online master’s degree in education in educational administration and supervision, and I plan to graduate from this program in the spring of 2018 and become a school principal.

This online program has given me the flexibility to complete course work when I have the time, which enables me to attend my school and children’s events. In my online classes at Ball State,

I have had outstanding professors that were prompt at replying to my questions and had a desire to ensure that we as students succeed.

In my free time I enjoy coaching, participating in my children’s events, and cookouts with family and friends.


Introducing Alicia Hazelwood

Hello, my name is Alicia Hazelwood. I’m currently pursuing my master’s degree in quantitative psychology in the Department of Educational Psychology at Ball State University. I plan to graduate in the summer 2018 and then perhaps continue into the doctorate program. I greatly enjoy my work as a graduate assistant at Ball State as well.

I am so grateful to have found the online program offered by Ball State in my field. The convenience of online learning has allowed me to pursue not only my dream of higher education but also the dream of being a mother. I am able to stay home with my son and still receive an exceptionally high quality education.

Because of my interest in online learning, I have entered the field of quantitative psychology. My passion is in assessment and measurement. I am looking forward to continuing research in distance education.

In my free time, I am busy being a mom to my three-year-old son. I enjoy watching sports of any kind but I especially love basketball and baseball. I use cycling and running to compensate for my love eating good food.


Introducing Caroline (Klein) Heston

Hello, my name is Caroline Klein. I am a graduate student, double majoring in adult and community education and executive development for public service.

In May 2010, I received my bachelor’s from Indiana University-Bloomington in nonprofit-management with a minor in fund-raising. The traditional learning environment was conducive to my development as a student at that time. However, as I began to focus on all the other things in life, an online degree was a better fit with my work schedule (and play schedule). For me, the biggest adjustment to online courses, for me, has been my dry sense of humor, which never translates well digitally!

I currently work at a woman’s shelter/advocacy nonprofit as an office and development assistant. As far as my aspirations and career goals, I try not to be too rigid. My only goals are to be the best I can be at my job and continue to help others whether it is coworkers, donors, or the population we serve. It is humbling and wonderful to be a part of the organization’s mission and vision.

I am so grateful to not only help other students with what I have learned as an online ambassador and online student, but to learn from others as well. On any given day, you will find me reading, swimming, biking, or playing with my wonderful dogs and cats. Also, because I am accident prone, I don’t go anywhere without a Tide To-Go Pen.


Introducing Ceara Jackson

Hello, my name is Ceara Jackson. In summer of 2016, I started working toward obtaining my master’s degree in education in educational administration and supervision. I am on the path to graduate in spring 2018, while earning my administration license simultaneously. The best part—all my course work through this program has been completed entirely online. Choosing Ball State’s online program has been, and continues to be, a rewarding experience, as it has allowed me the flexibility of maintaining my duties as wife, mom, fourth grade teacher, and full-time student.

I first began my Ball State career as a full-time undergraduate student in 2006, majoring in elementary education with a concentration in educational reading. Upon graduating in 2010, I immediately began my career as an educator. After working two years at a charter school in Richmond, Indiana, and five years at an elementary school in Danville, Indiana, I decided it was time to continue my professional goals of becoming an educational leader. Ball State’s online programs have made conquering this goal possible.

My favorite Ball State memory thus far is my experience of working with Dr. Walker-Hitchens on the Virginia Ball Center for Creative Inquiry project: You, Me, and the Bee. A group of fellow Ball State students and I worked to create a children’s exhibit focusing on the honeybee. The finished exhibit was displayed at a local museum and now resides at the Muncie Children’s Museum.

In my spare time, I enjoy going for a jog, reading a juicy novel, and, of course, spending time with my two children and husband. I also enjoy the occasional ‘binge watching’ of a Netflix series, when I am not chasing around a toddler or doing schoolwork.


Introducing Chad Kline

My name is Chad Kline. I am a 2016 graduate of Ball State University with a bachelor's degree in business administration, a program offered entirely online through Ball State online and distance education. As an online student, I was an Online Ambassador and a member of the Council for Alumni and Student Engagement.

I first attended Ball State University on campus in 1997; however, I found that college was not for me at the time. I returned to Ball State as an online student in the spring of 2014 with a clear vision and a more motivated approach to my education. This return would not have been possible without the opportunity through Ball State's online programs.

I am currently the executive director for Wells County Economic Development in Bluffton, Indiana. My role allows me to work closely with current and future employers of Wells County to help facilitate economic growth, workforce development, and job attraction.

I am married, have two dogs, and reside in Markle, Indiana. In my free time, I enjoy traveling, experiencing new craft beers, and being an active alumnus.


Introducing Barbara Mebane

Barbara MebaneMy name is Barbara Mebane, and I am seeking an EdD in adult, higher, and community education with cognates in higher education and the community college. My broad research interest is equity and access for women in education, and I anticipate a May 2019 graduation.

My background in education has been mainly at the secondary level, and I have worked in various positions within township and urban public school districts, as well as in private education. I have earned two master’s degrees at Ball State, the most recent in adult and community education in May 2015 – totally online! These opportunities have been quite fulfilling and purposeful for me as a teacher and learner. However, now I am interested in transitioning to higher education in an adjunct role.

I am thrilled to offer support for online learning opportunities at Ball State. My greatest passion is reading, but I also enjoy traveling, art and music, cultural activities, museums, event planning, Zumba, and playing cards. I am a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. 


Introducing Kat Parker

Kat ParkerHello, fellow Cardinals! I am Kat Parker, and I am a sophomore with Ball State. My major is general studies with minors in psychology and business information technology. It is my hope that I will graduate sometime in 2022-23, so if there are any of you part time college students taking one or two courses a semester reading this, please know that you are not alone. Each semester gets us one step closer to our goal!

Besides taking courses online, being an Ambassador, and working for a local middle school as a guidance secretary, I have been married for 29 years and have been blessed with three wonderful daughters. When my older daughters were already in college and my youngest was finishing her junior year in high school, I felt the time was right to finish what I started back in 1987 as a freshman at Ball State and earn my degree. Once I saw that Ball State offered several online degree programs, my mind was made up to return.

Being an older student has been challenging at times but my focus and purpose is stronger than it was 30 years ago. I am definitely a far better student this time around!

It is my hope to help inspire and encourage older adults who are thinking about getting a degree that it is possible at any age and at any pace. Whether you are a full-time or part-time student, the journey is different for all of us but the destination is the same. 


Introducing Cassandra Plummer

Cassandra PlummerHello all! My name is Cassandra Plummer. I currently hold an associate degree in business administration.

Shortly after having my daughter, I decided that it would be best to continue with my education. After careful consideration, I determined that Ball State University was the best fit for me. I have been taking ‘completely’ online courses since the fall of 2015, and I couldn’t be happier. I love the flexibility that the online courses bring to my ever-changing schedule. I am on track to graduate in the fall of 2018 with my bachelor's degree in business administration.

When I am not busy chasing around a rambunctious toddler, I enjoy spending time outdoors, traveling, arts and crafts, and spending time with loved ones. I pride myself on my ability to make some of the ‘best’ Pinterest fails.

I am so beyond grateful to have been chosen as a representative of the online ambassador community. I am looking forward to being able to share what I have learned thus far, while getting to know some of my fellow peers.

As Christian D. Larson said, ‘Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.’


Introducing Mistie Potts

Mistie PottsHello, I am Mistie Potts, and I feel blessed to welcome you to Ball State University. My journey in college began after high school, earning my B.S. in elementary education. I taught in classrooms for 12 years, then did psycho-educational evaluations for two years, and simultaneously earned my high ability/gifted license and M.A. in educational psychology from Ball State University completely online.

I loved the experiences I had with my professors and classmates online. The decision to return to Ball State for my PhD in educational psychology (an on-campus program) was simple. Rigorous curriculum, renowned reputation in the field, caring professors, lively campus, and reasonable commute time were all high on my list when I enrolled in the doctoral program.

I am now in my final year of course work/dissertation process in the PhD program, and I am transitioning to a graduate assistant position this fall, where I will have the opportunity to teach and assist faculty with research. Prior to the G.A. assignment, I was working as a behavioral therapist.

I am married and raising three sons, plus one beagle I know the struggles of balancing work, home life, and higher education. But it is well worth the effort!

I currently commute 90 minutes, and I take a hybrid of online and on-campus courses to allow flexibility with my family. I know Ball State is enhancing and shaping me into the professional educational psychologist I desire to become, and my career in the field is in sight.

While I am extremely dedicated to my goal, I make sure to enjoy free time too. I love to garden, landscape, refinish and repurpose furniture, attend my sons’ events, bicycle, volunteer in scouting, be with church family, and explore nature. I am a firm believer in having some green space daily, away from technology, to stay healthy and focused.


Introducing Robyn Spoon

Robyn SpoonHello! My name is Robyn Spoon. I am pursuing a master’s degree in executive development for public service, which I began in January 2017. The Ball State program is offering me great flexibility along with a great education while I work full time as an independent education consultant. My primary work is with high school students and their families in the college admissions process, but I also work with students who are struggling in their learning environment.

In addition to my work, I am a mother of two young adults and a teen.

Along with my course work through Ball State, I have been fortunate to get the opportunity to work on an adaptive learning project. This project is helping me figure out what I might like to study as I consider a future doctoral degree.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my family, watching movies, and traveling.