by Zoe Sypolt
“For me, I was coming back home.” Coming back home was a priority for new professor Nikki Chandler and her family.
Chandler learned early on what Potomac State had to offer. “My first college classes were taken through PSC when I was a high school student at Petersburg High School.”
Chandler’s love of math started early. “I always loved math. In high school, I think I liked it most because I naturally excelled in the subject matter and enjoyed helping my fellow students learn,” Chandler said.
“As a math major in college, I realized it’s an incredibly deep and powerful subject matter. Odd as it may seem to ‘non-math’ people, I believe it the most interesting and most beautiful subject one can study.”
After high school graduation, she started out in college at West Virginia University before getting married to a U.S. Air Force airman. To be closer to the air force base, she then transferred to a small university, The University of Mount Olive in North Carolina.
While there, her professors inspired her to become a professor of mathematics. “There were only three math professors in the entire math department at UMO. Those three professors became my greatest mentors,” Chandler said.
Her experience at UMO led her to PSC. “Their influence led me to want to teach at a similar small institution, where the professors can get to know all the students and have the greatest impact on the entire student body.”
Chandler’s best advice for students during the busy semester is to remember that college is not a sprint but a marathon. “Just keep swimming” is what comes to her mind when you may feel like giving up. She advises students to push through the semester and just do their best.
In her spare time, Chandler enjoys spending time outdoors or playing tractors with her young son, who will be two in January. She and her family love the West Virginia mountains and are thrilled to now be “home.”