Lois Amsel Jarman ’11 chose Shenandoah because of the personalized education it offered her and the flexibility of the Doctor of Professional Studies in Organizational Leadership program. While Jarman was a student, she was able to continue working as a public school world language teacher because her in-person class commitment on campus was limited to one night per week. She loved the cohort camaraderie, atmosphere of the classes and the course selection, where she had guidance from former Assistant Professor Brenda E. Murphy ’98 when choosing her classes. “The instructors are available, helpful and highly knowledgeable,” said Jarman.
Jarman’s fondest memories during her time at Shenandoah were working with her cohort members, their class discussions and holding her bound dissertation.
Jarman is the director of international affairs at Shepherd University, in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. In this position, she is responsible for all activities related to international students, which includes everything from recruitment, registration, advising and student activities to post graduation planning. “I supervise a staff of four and we are responsible for the 60+ international students on our campus,” said Jarman. When she took this role in 2018, the program only had 35 students enrolled and now has nearly doubled for the fall 2020 semester with 64 students.
Jarman has been at Shepherd University for ten years, beginning her career there as an adjunct professor while she was writing her dissertation for her Shenandoah degree. In 2015, she created the curriculum for Shepherd’s Intensive English Language Program and once the program was implemented in 2016, they named her the director of the program. She was promoted to her current position in 2018.
“I love teaching and watching students grow,” said Jarman. “The students are the best part of my job!” In her current position, Jarman also teaches education courses as an adjunct professor, so the most rewarding part of her career right now is watching students grow from the English program to successful regular degree students.
Jarman’s Shenandoah education prepared her for her career because she uses the second language acquisition concentration of her degree on a daily basis. “That course work provided me with the skills to develop our language program,” said Jarman. The leadership component of her degree prepared her for the administrative aspect of her role as director of international affairs.
Jarman’s advice to students is: “Be flexible and be creative. Think outside the box. And perseverance pays!”