By Evan Herbison
With the quarter and the school year both coming to an end, Whatcom is preparing to wish four of its instructors a fond farewell and a happy retirement.
The four include Marlyn Bruner and Kathy Sible, both of whom actually retired in July and August of last year, respectively, but also weren’t included in last year’s farewell, as well as Suzanne Ural and Connie Rockstad.
“I feel sad about leaving Whatcom,” said Ural in her farewell e-mail. “However, I feel good about having played a direct part in the education of thousands of students.” Ural says that she regularly runs into former students off campus, and is always greeted warmly.
Each instructor has given Whatcom at least 10 years, and their absence will surely be felt. Rockstad’s position will prove especially difficult to fill; a new coordinator for the nursing program is still being sought.
Rockstad began her career at Whatcom in 2000, when she was hired on as a nursing instructor the first day that she came in.
“I always wanted to teach,” said Rockstad. She added that her master’s program had prepared her well for the demands of teaching.
When the program became independent and got its own degree in 2004, she became the director of associate degrees in nursing, and has been helping to teach nurses ever since.
Rockstad plans to use the extra time to camp with her husband and visit her mother in Kansas, but will also be doing private consultation in the fall.
A formal recognition for the 2009-2010 retirees was held on June 2 at 3 p.m. in Syre Student Center.
“I don’t like saying goodbyes,” said Ural. “So I’ll just say I’ll see you around.”