Barbara Baird Pauli
Barbara Baird-Pauli knew from kindergarten that education would be her life. Jackson College helped her fulfill her dream.
Baird-Pauli graduated from a smaller high school, Concord High School, and attended what was Jackson Community College from 1976-78. JCC offered a great transition from high school to a university setting, Coming from a large, single-parent family, cost factors also made community college a wise choice.
“I had earned a two-year academic scholarship to JCC. Also, the reputation it had was credible, and it made perfect sense,” she said. The community college allowed for a transition socially and academically. It provided different study habits with the collegiate academic exposure, and offered instructors who paved the way to further study. Baird-Pauli, who says she was always somewhat of an “introvert,” gained important social exposure by participating in the student senate and the student newspaper.
After JCC she continued her studies at Eastern Michigan University, earning a bachelor’s degree, then the University of Wisconsin – Madison, earning her master’s degree. She began her career as a special education teacher, working out of state for a couple years before returning to Michigan and Jackson Public Schools. She went on to join the administration, and today serves as principal of instruction at Jackson High School.
“My degree (from Jackson College) gave me a great foundation in working with our students today that I can credibly cite that starting at a community college is a valid educational start,” she said. “Attending Jackson Community College or Jackson College isn’t ‘just’ Jackson College; it is pursuing your education beyond high school with a with a curriculum that’s rich, that provides for instruction, that offers a more personalized teacher-to-student ratio, and allow you to pursue that with affordability.”