Second Life of Tara Johnson

By Koby Heramil |Staff Writer|


Literature, composition and mother of two there is nothing this professor can’t handle.

Dr. Tara M. Johnson, a professor at CSUSB works back to back on campus and returns home to two children ages 3 and 2.  Like Johnson many other students on campus have children and homework.

“Outside of class I read, write and research in my field to stay current. After spending time teaching, studying and parenting, I have very little time to eat and sleep,” said Johnson.

Johnson finds comparison with her students and they too are aware of her second-life as a teacher and mother. “One of the ways I balance motherhood and teaching is to allow one to inform the other.  For example, oftentimes, I use examples from my family life to help illustrate concepts during class because many students can relate to them.”

Because Johnson makes an effort to relate to her students, handling teaching and motherhood are balanced. “Many of my students are parents themselves, and I try my best to form a sense of community in my classes that help us to balance university, family and work responsibilities.  It is very difficult, but we can learn from one another,” said Johnson.

Johnson enjoys doing both and wouldn’t stop doing one or the either.  She continues to do research, which goes hand in hand with parenting.

“I’m currently writing an article for publication that discusses how these different aspects of our lives are integrated to form a whole individual and how this integration is portrayed through literary memoir.  In this way, motherhood is informing not only my teaching but my research as well,” said Johnson.

Johnson is a professor for literature and composition; she has been teaching for 12 years. Its never a dull moment when Johnson sees her students outside of class.

“I always enjoy seeing students outside of class.  I often wonder what happens to students after finishing a course, and seeing students outside of class allows me to catch up on their news and their successes,” said Johnson.


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