COBE classes welcome President Kyle
Bruce Brown's teaching style, he says, is "geared toward applied and real-world experiential learning."
As the mayor of the City of Radford who is also an adjunct professor in Radford University's College of Business and Economics, Brown, M.S. '78 brings that philosophy to his organizational behavior class.
In addition to imparting his wisdom from his own experiences, Brown regularly invites to his class experts who can communicate with his students through "an applied perspective," he said.
One of Brown's regular class visitors is RU President Penelope W. Kyle.
"I don't think there's anybody better than the university president that I could get to talk to my classes about how she helped set the tone, culture, climate, structure and atmosphere on the college campus," Brown said.
On Nov. 10, President Kyle visited two of Brown's classes to field questions from students curious about current issues and happenings at the university. "Like she said in class, it's an opportunity for her to connect with the students," Brown said following the two 50-minute classes.
"What would you like to know?" President Kyle asked each class, both of which has approximately 40 students enrolled.
Brown's students eagerly obliged the president's request, asking questions about her day-to-day activities, the pressures she felt when she became RU's first female president and why she chose to come to RU. She also addressed various campus topics, such as parking, athletics and venues for club sports
Through each class session, President Kyle spoke of her own career path and the challenges she faced. The president said she had received guidance along the way and offered to do the same for RU students following their graduation from the university.
"I'll be glad to serve as a mentor to any of you. Just pick up the phone and call me," Kyle said. "I'll be glad to talk with you and hear what you're experiencing and offer some suggestions that can help you."
Emily Morgan, a junior public relations major from Williamsburg, said she was "very impressed" with the university president.
"She answered everything honestly and truthfully, and that really benefited our class," Morgan said. "We've definitely been looking forward to her speaking to us."
Kyle said she relishes opportunities to meet and talk with students and actively looks for venues, such as Brown's class, to create and find those opportunities.
"I want to hear what you have to say about Radford, and I want to hear how things are going for you," she said. "I want hear what you might want to change about Radford. I want to hear what you think is great and we shouldn't change."
Brown said President Kyle began speaking to his classes in the fall of 2012 and has been a regular contributor each semester since.
"It's an opportunity for my students to see up close and personal a very real, genuine, sincere and caring individual who is there to help students," Brown said. "She really connects with the students. She listens, and they take hope from her."