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Humans of Oglethorpe: Dr. Iona Wynter Parks

Dr. Iona Wynter Parks

Lecturer in French

“I love this school and I love that diversity isn’t just a buzzword”

“When I first came here, I was only teaching one class. By the end of the year, I was teaching full time.

Dr. ParksI wasn’t used to this size liberal arts college. I went to a huge school in Quebec and I played sports, so it was very different. When I walk around campus, students speak and ask how I’m doing and it surprises me.

I love this school and I love that diversity isn’t just a buzzword—it truly is a diverse school.

Other than teaching, I work with the athletes by helping them with academic problems they might have. And even though I was in the Olympics and people think I’m some kind of “jock worshipper”, the student-athletes can be actual students…The sports they play don’t define them. There are people who do art, sports, theatre, or music.

Students are composed of many different things…I have students come back to me all the time who might major in business and they bring me artwork they’ve done and I just can’t believe that they are so talented.

I keep their artwork and hang it up in my office. I love teaching here, the books, the curriculum. It definitely isn’t a chore to come to work.”


Humans of Oglethorpe was created by a Pegasus Creative student intern in University Communications at Oglethorpe. Inspired by Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton, this series will share personal stories and perspectives from across campus. Everyone has a story and everyone is human. Would you like to be involved in this series? Email Bailey Burns.

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