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KATHLEEN H. BARNES – CREATING QUALITY EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES FOR STUDENTS

Quality education matters the most for society’s development and overall success. It develops leadership skills in the students to succeed in their professional career and help them stabilize their family and community. No community gets strong without education. Many underdeveloped societies suffer from poverty, unemployment, and other issues because they have no access to quality education. Education is one of the essential factors that change the fate of individuals and allow them to grow in their professional careers. Graduated individuals are more likely to improvise their professional skills. They know how to interact with community people, leaving a strong and positive impact on the future generation.

There is a noticeable wage gap between people with and without a degree. The difference is projected to grow more. Studies show that people with a bachelor’s degree working full-time earn up to 84% more income than those who hold a high school diploma. A college education offers enormous benefits to the students working in the professional field. The advent of technology and innovations have changed the job culture in the industry. With the smarter and more sophisticated technology, companies may filter out some roles for automated business processes. This means that jobs that rely on human interaction are replaced with artificial intelligence.

In the wake of such change, companies will require people with an advanced understanding of artificial intelligence and other technologies. It has become necessary to invest in an education that allows students to handle more advanced needs. The job market is becoming very tough, and companies are seeking to hire employees with well-rounded educations. Educational leaders believe that students should engage in educational activities that improve their proficiencies in writing and communication. Just holding a degree in math or engineering is not enough. Students need to go beyond earning a degree. Soft skill knowledge and understanding of the latest technology have become must-have skills in the people. Quality of education plays a vital role in developing a successful career. Educational leaders like Kathleen Hildreth Barnes are improvising the education system of the institutes, guiding students to embrace the right path, and creating educational opportunities for students.

Kathleen was born on October 11, 1952, in Springfield, Massachusetts. She is a former pediatric physical therapist and played a leadership role at Endicott College. She spent 28 years creating enormous learning opportunities for the students and served numerous responsibilities, including the role of interim president and interim provost in the college. Barnes believes that education is the only tool that can change lives for the better and allow societies to gain economic stability. As a passionate leader in the field of education, she promotes a universal pattern for learning inclusiveness, accessibility, and equity for all. She also believes that students need a door of opportunity to enhance their knowledge and soft skills to choose the right academic path. Plus, she takes pride in helping the students accomplish their academic goals.

In the education industry, Dr. Barnes is well known for her expertise in maintaining student retention and graduation. During her full-time tenure at the Endicott College, Barnes led a campus-wide retention effort, which increased the college’s 21% retention and 19% graduation rates. In addition, she also taught some courses to the students in their first-year college experience. The courses she taught included athletic training, physical therapy, exercise science, and other special honors courses. Kathleen’s objective to help students deal with educational challenges with creativity and an intellectual approach has created results-oriented opportunities for students.

Before becoming an educational leader, Kathleen had a successful career as a pediatric physical therapist. She was an active member of the American Therapy Association and the Rehabilitation, Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America. After transitioning her career into education, she got involved with physical therapy ethics and legislative affairs. Plus, she also served on multiple committees for the Federation of State Boards in Physical Therapy. The governor of Massachusetts appointed Barnes to the Board of Allied Health Professions for the three terms. She also received Distinguished Service Awards from the Federation of State Boards in Physical Therapy and the Rehabilitation, Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America for her contributions.

Barnes spent her early years in Monson, Massachusetts, until her family relocated to Connecticut in 1962. She completed her high school education at the Old Saybrook Senior High School. Later, she went to Endicott College, where she completed her associate degree in Liberal Arts in May 1972. She received her B.S in Physical Therapy from Quinnipiac University in May 1976. In 1998, she earned her M.S in physical therapy from the University of Indianapolis. She later received her doctoral degree in Arts and Sciences in 2009 from the Union Institute & University, Cincinnati, Ohio. She is a licensed physical therapist in the states of Massachusetts and Maine.

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