Kay E. Strong
I earned by Ph.D. in Economics from Southern Illinois University, a Masters degree from Ohio University in International Affairs and a B.S. in Education from Central Michigan University. I recently completed a Masters degree in studies of the future at the University of Houston. My academic areas of expertise involve econometrics, international economics and futures studies, an emerging new field. My research projects over the last two years have been concentrated on promoting strategic foresight in the classroom.
Questions and answers
Why did you choose to teach at BW?
I chose to teach at BW because of its emphasis on high academic standards and its openness to innovation. When the institutional culture supports high academic standards, the return on investment is also high. BW offers learners a high return on their educational investment. BW is, also, actively growing its identity as a promoter of innovation. Teaching strategic foresight in the classroom is a relatively new phenomenon. The U of Houston is home to the only graduate degree in future studies. There exists no similar undergraduate programs in the US. I believe that BW can become home to the first undergraduate major in futures studies. This is why I have chosen to teach at BW.
What characteristics distinguish BW from other colleges/universities?
The feature that most distinguishes BW from other colleges and universities that I have been affiliated with is its friendly small town atmosphere. I love walking across campus and greeting and being greeted by students and colleagues. But being small town doesn't mean nothing to do! There are so many quality events on campus that it is hard sometimes to make a choice without feeling like you are missing out.
How do you mentor students?
I mentor students by sharing knowledge and experience and by creating opportunities for self-exploration in my courses. I maintain an open door policy so that students feel comfortable with dropping by to raise questions or just chat. I want my students to be successful but that doesn't mean being easy. If students are willing to work hard, they will grow intellectually and that is the essence of success.
What do students like best about your class?
Students most appreciate how the real world is brought into our classroom for open discussion and sense-making. In my advanced courses, students appreciate the opportunity to learn how-to conduct empirical research.
If you weren't teaching what would you be doing?
I'm not sure that is possible...when I am not teaching at BW, I am teaching English to university students in China, or hosting camps to introduce young children to futures thinking, or prepping futures material for teacher workshops. But then again, if I were not teaching, then I would choose learning!