Got a Minute? Catch up with veteran teacher Mary Lampkins (’88)

by Monica Hoel
Mary Lampkins (E&H ’88) says her older siblings had to endure her “playing teacher” when she lined them up for pretend school as early as when she was five years old. But she has used an impressive career in education to prove that she wasn’t just playing. And in 2020, Mary retired after 32 years of teaching in the Washington County, Virginia, school system.

But her time in the classroom didn’t wrap up in the way that she had hoped, because the pandemic cut her last semester short. “Our last day in class was on Friday the 13th…and I told my students that we would be back together soon…but that didn’t happen.”

Mary did her best to use video conferencing, pre-recorded messages, and even the U.S. Mail to make the end of her school as “normal” as possible. She is a self-professed “Mother Hen” when it comes to her students, and she did everything she could to protect these elementary school children of whom she was so fond and so protective. Several years ago, Mary completed her master’s in education at Emory & Henry with plans to be a reading specialist: but in the end, she really missed being with her same students day after day. So she took her advanced degree back into the elementary classroom where she felt she made the most difference for children.

She admits that she has seen much change during her years on the job – not all great. She’s not a huge fan of standardized learning because she feels it doesn’t give students enough room to really explore and understand the material. She is hopeful that this unusual pause in education might give educators a chance to reconsider SOLs, because Mary is never going to be in favor of anything that doesn’t give children their best chance to learn.

You can read more about Mary at SWVA Today, and you can hear an interview with her in the WEHC archives: https://archive.org/details/OntheDuckPondWall

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  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/2310-dr-will-bodfish-is-making-connections-at-the-eamph"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/88,48,600,560/11140_bodfish.rev.1650660222.webp 1x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/88,48,600,560/11140_bodfish.rev.1650660222.jpg 1x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/88,48,600,560/11140_bodfish.rev.1650660222.jpg" alt="Dr. Will Bodfish E&H Class of 2013 E&H Physical Therapy School Class of 2015" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="512" data-max-h="512" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/2310-dr-will-bodfish-is-making-connections-at-the-eamph">Dr. Will Bodfish is making connections at the E&H School of Health Sciences</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"><p> Dr. Will Bodfish is on a mission…to find you.</p><a href="/live/news/2310-dr-will-bodfish-is-making-connections-at-the-eamph" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>
  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/1352-emory-henry-invited-to-participate-in-swva"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,65,635,700/6707_jack.rev.1565308906.webp 1x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,65,635,700/6707_jack.rev.1565308906.jpg 1x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,65,635,700/6707_jack.rev.1565308906.jpg" alt="Tennessee Hills Distillery's canine mascot, Jack. We're going to virtually visit the distillery through the E&H portion of COA." width="345" height="225" data-max-w="635" data-max-h="635" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/1352-emory-henry-invited-to-participate-in-swva">Emory & Henry Invited to Participate in SWVA Higher Ed College for Older Adults</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"> E&H Alumni invited to participate in online College for Older Adults FREE in the Fall of 2020. <a href="/live/news/1352-emory-henry-invited-to-participate-in-swva" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>
  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/2675-air-force-successes-to-foster-fails-jeff-links"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.webp 3x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.jpg 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.jpg 3x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.jpg" alt="Jeff Link with wife, Yoshimi Link E&H Class of 1971" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/787,531,2656,2400/13032_IMG-0187.rev.1672950749.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1869" data-max-h="1869" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/2675-air-force-successes-to-foster-fails-jeff-links">Air Force Successes to Foster Fails: Jeff Link’s Retirement Features a New Kind of Service</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"><p>Service comes in many forms, and these days Jeff has hung up his U.S. Air Force duties in favor of a different sort of service.</p><a href="/live/news/2675-air-force-successes-to-foster-fails-jeff-links" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>
  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/866-dr-bob-buchanan-receives-award"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,11,280,291/6479_Dr._Bob_Buchanan.rev.1560787959.webp 1x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,11,280,291/6479_Dr._Bob_Buchanan.rev.1560787959.jpg 1x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,11,280,291/6479_Dr._Bob_Buchanan.rev.1560787959.jpg" alt="Dr. Bob Buchanan, E&H Class of 1958, is retired from University of California, Berkeley." width="345" height="225" data-max-w="280" data-max-h="280" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/866-dr-bob-buchanan-receives-award">Dr. Bob Buchanan Receives Award</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"> Dr. Buchanan (E&H ’58) was among a small group of outstanding scientists honored by the American Society of Plant Biologists <a href="/live/news/866-dr-bob-buchanan-receives-award" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>