MURRAY, Ky. — Students at Murray State University are consistently going above and beyond, finding new ways to get involved and obtain their future goals.

Kathryn Followell, a senior from Paducah, is one such student. Throughout her time at Murray State, Followell has taken full advantage of the opportunities afforded to her at the University as a student at Murray State’s regional campus in Paducah. Now, as she completes her student-teaching requirements at Paducah Middle School, Followell feels more certain than ever that she is on the right path toward achieving her future goals. This is her story.


Middle school education with a concentration in math and social studies




Paducah, Kentucky

High School: 

Lone Oak High School

Who has influenced you the most in your life and why?

My mom. She has taught me how to cook, clean and sew — all of which I have failed to find success in. However, one thing I have learned from her is perseverance. If I make mistakes, things don’t go as planned or bad things happen, my only choice is to persevere.

If you could spend one hour with anyone, who would it be and why?

Out of literally anyone, I would choose my grandfather. An old man who likes to whistle, laugh and play cards — there’s nothing better!

What do you want to do after graduation?

I hope to find a job in a middle school, wherever it may be, and invest my heart in it.

Why did you decide to attend Murray State?

I live and work full-time in Paducah. Why choose to go somewhere else when I can earn a bachelor’s degree from a top-tier university right in my backyard?

What is something you’ve accomplished at Murray State that you’re most proud to have done?

I am proud of all that I have learned — though that is more a compliment to my professors! I have taken knowledge, applied it and realized its value, which is really what it’s all about.

You’ve been completing your practicum and student-teaching requirements at Paducah Middle School, correct? How has that experience been?

Exciting, exhausting, entertaining and eye-opening. I’ve gone through the gambit of emotions. Each day I’m there, I have one kid tell me I’m the worst and one kid tell me I’m the best. Every day is a new lesson in humility, kindness and patience.

What opportunities have you been afforded at Murray State?

The sole possibility of earning a degree in my hometown without having to travel hours away is the best opportunity. And, if you add to that amazing professors and interesting coursework? Without Murray State, I would not be ready to pursue my future career.

Who is one of your favorite professors and why?

Ask anyone in my class and their answer would be Dr. G — Dr. Miguel Gomez, coordinator for the middle school program. Without Dr. G, I would not be nearly as passionate, confident or excited about becoming a middle school teacher.

What do you think sets Murray State apart from other universities?

Murray State has a small-town feel. You have a sense that the community is rooting for you.

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