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Emerita Profile: Shirley Badger

Shirley Badger joined the Ohio State ATI faculty in 1976, teaching for 33 years before her retirement in 2009. And since then, she has been one busy person.

The most important part of her post-retirement life, she says, has been her work as a hospice volunteer. "I always thought I'd do that when I retired. It was at the top of my list." Shirley was teaching at Ohio State ATI during her mother's final illness. "I could only go to Pennsylvania on the weekends, so I was grateful for the loving care of hospice," Shirley notes. "I knew I wanted to be a hospice volunteer after that." Shirley works in direct care at Brookdale Senior Living in Wooster, caring for several paitents with dementia or Alzheimer's Disease. She is part of the Welcome Team and the Being There Team. "When people don't have family, we sit with them so they don't have to die alone. It's become something very spiritual and special to me."

Shirley served as a deacon at First Presbyterian Church in Wooster. Deacons are the caregivers for the congregation, visitng the homebound and providing other forms of support. She also serves as a poll worker when needed for the Wayne County Board of Elections.

Shirley taught a variety of classes at Ohio State ATI. "When you work at a small school, you wear a lot of caps," she says. In addition to a course in improving college reading, Shirley taught technical writing, business writing, and speech courses. Prior to coming to Ohio State ATI, Shirley had taught in the Pennsylvania public schools for six years, including junior and senior high school English. One of the things she liked most about teaching at Ohio State ATI was working with college-age students. "It was refreshing, and I enjoyed seeing them transition from being away from home for the first time to being well on their way to independence by the time they completed their internships."