KCC Spotlight: Random Harrison
Meet Random Harrison
Random Harrison is a Kentucky College Coach serving at Elizabethtown High School in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. He has served at two sites during his four years of service with this KyCC AmeriCorps program. Read below for a look into Random’s experience as a KCC at his current site!
What has been your favorite part about serving as a Kentucky College Coach?
Hands down I would have to say that my favorite part was working with the students. Being able to help guide them through an admittedly difficult process and prepare them for the next steps have been hugely rewarding.
What has been your favorite part about serving on your particular site?
I’ve worked at two sites over the past four years, and one of the most rewarding relationships you can make at your school is with the school counselor. Aside from being knowledgeable about most, if not all, of the students, they provide that link into the school that helps you navigate the occasionally difficult situations that an educational environment can sometimes garner.
What is one project you really enjoyed working on?
One project I really enjoyed was one Christmas working with the school’s FRYSC program. Together we built a float of a parade. I constructed a huge box, 4 foot by 4 foot, with a removable lid and painted it to look like a present. The kids added lights and decorations and were stationed in and around the box, throwing candy to the crowd. It was a fun way to get people to learn a bit more about the FRYSC and College Coach Programs.
What skills have you learned through the KCC program?
Trying to assemble all of the things I’ve learned while in service is an almost impossible task. One of the biggest things I’ve learned is an appreciation of the students that we are serving. So many times, all these kids need is someone who will tell them how it is and listen to problems they are facing. We can’t always help like we’d want to, but at least we can be a sounding board. Another thing I learned was how much I enjoy working with the students. Thanks to the Segal Award I’ve received, I’ve been able to get most of my Masters program paid for, and I start student teaching for High School English next Fall.
Tell us one of your proudest professional achievements.
One of my proudest moments was an email that was sent to one of our counselors after the student had taken an ACT Prep course I had offered. The mother wrote to say that her son had increased his scores 3 pionts in English and Reading, and a full 5 points in Science. It was wonderful to get that feedback and know that I’m making a difference.
What are your potential plans for the future?
This program has allowed me to connect with educators and administrators all over the area in a way that would have been impossible otherwise. Along with this, the Segal Award has allowed me to return to college to get my Masters in teaching. I will be conducting my student teaching next Fall, and plan to continue working in a high school as an English Teacher.
What would you want to impart to future College Coaches?
This program gives back what you put into it. You have to be willing to reach out to the students and the faculty in your school. With that being said, if you are able to help just one student in your time as a college coach, it will be worth it. If you can make one student believe they can go to college, even though no one in their family has ever gone, then you are a successful College Coach. I feel privileged to have been able to help students for four years, though a global pandemic, and onto the stage for graduation.
Tell us an interesting fact about yourself!
Before moving to Kentucky I lived in Seattle. My undergraduate degree is in Theatre Arts, and I was a semi=professional actor in the Seattle area for quite awhile. Eventually, I’d like to teach drama either at the high school or college level.
Thank you, Random, for this heartfelt look into your KCC experience! It’s evident you love what you do, and Kentucky Campus Compact is privileged to have you in this AmeriCorps program. Best of luck in your future teaching endeavors!