Paul Canady

Polk PTA Alumnus: Don’t Be Afraid to Make a Career Change

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Paul Canady

The scariest day of Paul Canady’s life was the day he handed in his resignation, officially quitting his job as a bus mechanic. His heart pounded. His palms were sweaty. But something inside him told…

Polk State alumnus Jordan Burks is a music teacher at Auburndale Central Elementary.

With Push From Polk State, Alumnus Has Built His Life on Music

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Polk State alumnus Jordan Burks is a music teacher at Auburndale Central Elementary.

On any given day, you might find Jordan Burks leading his Auburndale Central Elementary students in a discussion on the future of music. Or tutoring the most musically inclined of those students after school. Or…

Gerene Thompsonjoined Polk State Lakeland as associate dean of academic affairs in June.

Associate Dean Aims for Polk to Be “The Place” to Teach

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Gerene Thompsonjoined Polk State Lakeland as associate dean of academic affairs in June.

After nearly two decades in higher education, Gerene Thompson is right where she wants to be: an institution where a college degree is within reach for anyone willing to work for it. Thompson joined Polk…

Renee Heacock is a graduate of Polk State and a nurse in the emergency department of Lakeland Regional Medical Center.

Polk Alumna Makes Moments Count for Patients

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Renee Heacock is a graduate of Polk State and a nurse in the emergency department of Lakeland Regional Medical Center.

As Polk State alumna Renee Heacock knows well, a single moment can change everything. For Heacock, “the moment” came on a Fort Myers soccer field and led her to play for Polk. Now, in her…

Christina Urbina

Polk’s Urbina Overcomes, Sees “Sunrises” in Her Future

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Christina Urbina

Christina Urbina describes the life she led up until a few years ago as standing in the ocean, right where the waves break, and getting knocked down over and over again. She dropped out of…

Kathy Leigh Berkowitz

Polk State Student Publishes Book About Childhood Abuse, Forgiveness

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Kathy Leigh Berkowitz

With the help of inspiration she found at Polk State, student Kathy Leigh Berkowitz has published a book titled, “The Brighter Side of a Darker Thing” — an apt name for a work that has its beginnings in childhood sexual abuse, but that ends with forgiveness and new happiness.

Christy Sallee

Polk Pianist Gets “Second Chance,” Pursues Dream at USF

Posted on by Polk Newsroom

Christy Sallee

Christy Sallee didn’t take a direct route or follow a conventional timetable in studying music at the university level. But she got there nonetheless, and Polk State helped her along the way. Sallee is Polk…

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