Alumni Alumni in the News In the News

February 26, 2018 at 8:32 am

Alumni News | Couple Found Passion for Teaching Math Through Different Pathways

Two Ohio University alumni love teaching math. Theresa “Tracy” Watson ’93M acquired her love for teaching math in graduate school, but her husband, Corey Boby ’96 M, always wanted to be a teacher, says an Arkansas Democrat-Gazette article titled “Benton math teachers create inviting tone.”

Boby and Watson ’93 both earned an M.S. in Mathematics from the College of Arts & Sciences at Ohio University.

Now both teach math at Benton High School in Arkansas.

Watson’s Path to the Classroom

Watson had no intention of becoming a teacher. It wasn’t until she was in graduate school at Ohio University did she fall in love with the idea.

“I had no desire until three years into graduate school,” Watson said. “To get them to pay for your tuition, they threw me into a classroom as a teacher’s assistant.

“That’s where I found I just like doing math. You give me math problems, and I am happy. And I found with teaching, that’s what I could do.”

Watson, who was also a professor at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock for 13 years, said she just loves school, and the math class is what she enjoyed the most.

“I got my undergraduate degree in math, and it wasn’t until I was forced to teach that I realized I could stay in school for the rest of my life and be a teacher,” she said.

Watson is a math and computer science teacher at Benton High School, alongside her husband, who teaches an ACT Math class, Bridge to Algebra 2, and AP Calculus. The couple, who met in graduate school, just celebrated 20 years together this past summer.

Boby’s Lifelong Dream of Teaching

Boby, who was previously selected as a 2017 state finalist for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, received his bachelor’s degree from Marietta College in 1994, and Watson earned hers from Millersville University in 1991. Boby first moved to Arkansas in 1996 for a job at the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts in Hot Springs.

“She convinced me to take it,” Boby said. “I think she was hoping I would never come back.”

He also previously served as the math coordinator for the Benton School District for seven years. He returned to the high school to teach last year.

“I just have always wanted to be a teacher,” Boby said. “I tried other things, but my heart brought me back to the classroom.

“For me, I always wanted to be a teacher. I wanted to be a teacher before I even stated school. Both my parents were teachers, and I played school before I even started school.”

Boby said that while he was serving in the administration role, it became obvious that teaching is what he was meant to do.

“I was teaching a college algebra class before the day begins at 7 a.m.,” he said. “And the best part of my day ended at 7:45 a.m. And when the best part of your day is over at 7:45, that’s not the way you want to spend your day.

“When I was honest with myself, I knew I needed to be in a classroom.”

Read the entire story in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

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