Hard working, passionate, and charismatic are words that describe Dr. Corey Beene.
The professor of history at South Plains College spreads her positive attitude and love for the subject throughout the classroom each day
Born and raised in San Antonio, Beene attended Robert E. Lee High School, where she earned a full scholarship to play volleyball at Angelo State University in San Angelo.
“I played volleyball, and that took up all my time,” explained Dr. Beene. “I didn’t have time to do things outside of volleyball.”
Dr. Beene continued to play volleyball throughout college and even joined club teams. Angelo State is where she pursued her bachelor’s degree in history and earned a master’s degree in international studies. She later earned her PhD in American history at Texas Tech University. Dr. Beene said that she did not get her PhD until she was in her 30’s, which inspired her life motto, “It’s never too late.”
Just to try something new, Dr. Beene has put some of her focus into a new project she has been working on, blogging about American history.
“I just keep trying to learn new things,” said Dr. Beene. “I want to try pivoting and doing new stuff.”
Dr. Beene teaches her students not only about history, but about life as well. She teaches her students to not be afraid to ask for help.
“I always tell my students it’s never too late to do something,” said Dr. Beene. “It doesn’t matter how old you are, or how young you are. Don’t let that be a hindrance in your life.”
Dr. Beene loves history in and outside of the class room, which is channeled through her teaching.
“I love my job,” said Dr. Beene. “I love what I do.”
It was former teachers and professors who inspired and generated her love for history, and made the idea of being a history professor a reality. Throughout college, Dr. Beene got to see how fun it was to talk about history all day, the flexible schedules and how much reading was involved.
“I was sitting there thinking, “man, this looks like the best job ever,”” said Dr. Beene.
Dr. Beene imparts the same ideas to her students.
“History can be cool,” said Dr. Beene.
She recognizes her personal history and how blessed she is for her history.
“If my great grand parents wouldn’t have come to Texas during the Mexican Revolution, I would still be in Mexico,” said Dr. Beene. “I wouldn’t be anywhere near who I am today.”
Because she knows where she could have been, Dr. Beene sees how great the United States is and wants to express that to her students as well.
“I feel like I am really patriotic,” Dr. Beene said, “and because of that, it translates into loving American history. I want to tell the students what has happened in the past, and this is why who we are today.”
Dr. Beene takes pride in her work and what she teaches.
“Teaching is about giving students facts that they wouldn’t know,” said Dr. Beene. “I feel like mission accomplished if I can get some of the students to understand what I am teaching.”
“I feel like I am the bridge between the past and the present,” she added. “History doesn’t have to be about a bunch of dead presidents.”
Dr. Beene said that she makes it a priority to make learning fun and enjoyable in the classroom.
“History is about culture, life stuff, and people,” said Dr. Beene. “It’s about the things that have made us American.”
While she was pursuing her PhD, Dr. Beene served as a teaching assistant at Texas Tech. She did that until she graduated, then got a job teaching at SPC. Dr. Beene has been a professor at SPC for close to 10 years.
“It’s the best job,” Dr. Beene said.
Dr. Beene is proud of the life she has lived so far, involving her kids, marriage, and teaching. She has learned that life is about hard work and you have to put in the effort.
“I am proud to work at a school that values students and what you guys are going to do with your life,” said Dr. Beene. “And again, I am proud to be an American and a Texan.”