Noted recently in this column:
Reporter Rosalie Myers, after she left The Sun, finished her college degree and became a teacher at Sterling High School where she taught former Sun associate managing editor Lynn Goodman Fields in a journalism class.
From The Sun, Lynn went on to complete her college degree and become a journalism teacher, just as Rosalie had done years before. Lynn taught at San Jacinto College.
I forgot to mention that another former associate managing editor, Ramona Merrill, was in Rosalie’s journalism class. Ramona joined the news staff after teaching at Channelview and before she was hired to teach at Crosby. Like Lynn, she was a prize-winning writer.
When I started to work at The Sun in 1952, Mary Terry was making plans to resign from her proof-reading job at The Sun, return to college to finish her degree and enter the teaching profession.
Sue Jones took Mary’s place as proof reader and later worked as the church news editor and finally, as wire editor. (Back then we used United Press, delaying our connection with the Associated Press until the late 1950s.)
Soon after Rosalie’s decision to go back to college, Sue enrolled at Lee College and later transferred to the University of Houston.
After earning her degree, she joined the faculty at Lee College, teaching journalism and sponsoring the campus yearbook and newspaper. Assuming more administrative duties, Sue became the director of Continuing Education. You might say she pioneered that program.
Except for Ramona, who already was a college grad when she came to work at The Sun, Lee College played a huge role in spreading “back to school fever” in the newsroom. Without the convenience and encouragement provided by this community college, it would have been much more difficult to transfer to universities to complete degrees.
Though I never became a teacher, I went back to school, too, attending LC second time around before I transferred to the University of Houston. Actually, I thought about teaching and even phoned Rosalie to get her advice. By then, in the late 1960s, she was teaching at Sterling.
Half joking (I think), Rosie said a new teacher should never smile for the first four months. That’s the best way to let the students know who’s in charge.
Even if I took Rosie’s (half joking) suggestion seriously, that wouldn’t have turned me off from a teaching career. In fact, I wasn’t turned off from teaching but still turned on to journalism.
Wanda Orton is a retired managing editor of The Sun. She can be reached at email@example.com, Attention: Wanda Orton.