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The faculty members in the College of the Ozarks Education department have a wealth of experience and knowledge to share with our students. Our faculty members are committed to doing whatever it takes to see our students become reflective decision makers and effective teachers.

Each member of the faculty has taught for a number of years in the public schools, and therefore can share not only “book” knowledge with our students, but “practical” knowledge that will assist students in their goal to become successful educators.

Kara Swofford, Ph.D. - Professor and Director of Teacher Education

Dr. Swofford began teaching in the Education Department in Fall 2007. She completed her undergraduate, masters and specialist degrees at Missouri State University and received her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Arkansas. Kara taught at the elementary level for six years and served four years as a primary school principal.  In 2012, she was named as Director of the Teacher Education Program.

Colleen Hardy, Ed.D. - Associate Professor

Dr. Colleen Hardy joined the faculty at College of the Ozarks in fall 2017.  Dr. Hardy earned a terminal degree at St. Louis University in Educational Leadership.  She has over 30 years experience in education.  During her 15 years in public education she worked as a classroom teacher, staff development specialist and a curriculum consultatnt.  As a teacher preparation faculty member in higher education she has had the opportunity to teach, develop new programs, provide leadership, and present internationally.  She worked extensively with the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education in the development of a statewide assessment system and the review of teacher preparation programs.  Dr. Hardy also serves as the Coordinator for Assessment in the Education Department.

Tina Keith, Ed.D. - Professor

Dr. Keith began her College of the Ozarks' career as a member of the Education Department faculty in Fall 2012.  She holds a Master of Arts degree from Lindenwood University, where she is also completed her Ed.D. in Instructional Leadership.  She has 12 years of experience as a classroom teacher, most recently in fourth grade, and nine years as a Library Media Specialist.  Dr. Keith also serves as a co-sponsor for the S-MSTA (Student Missouri State Teachers Association) organization on campus.

Kerry Moore Ed.D. - Associate Professor

Kerry Moore joined the faculty at College of the Ozarks in Fall 2013.  Mrs. Moore graduated with an elementary education/early childhood degree from Southeast Missouri State University and completed her master's degree in Reading at Evangel University.  Kerry's 12-year teaching career includes teaching Kindergarten and second grade, as well as serving as a Reading Recovery/CIM Interventionist.  Mrs. Moore is currently pursuing her doctorate in Leadership in Curriculum and Instruction at Evangel University.

Christy Patrick, Ed.D. - Assistant Professor

Dr. Patrick holds a Master of Arts degree from Missouri State University and earned her Ed.D. in Instructional Leadership from Lindenwood University.She joined the Education Department faculty in 2018.  Christy has over 20 years of experience as a classroom teacher, with varied experiences in kindergarten, third grade, sixth grade and junior high science.

Julie Jones- Administrative Assistant and Teacher Certification Officer

Mrs. Julie Jones joined the Education Department at College of the Ozarks in the fall of 2017.  Mrs. Jones earned her Bachelors of Science in Management and Masters of Organizational Leadership degrees at Evangel University.  She brings extensive experience working in higher education and working with educator preparation programs.  Mrs. Jones coordinates the daily operations of the Education office, verifies requirements for state certification, supervises student workers, and assists the Director of Teacher Education and the Education faculty.

Contact Information

Mrs. Julie Jones
Education Department at College of the Ozarks
P. O. Box 17, Pt. Lookout, MO  65726
Phone:  (417) 690-2150

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