Columbia College–Lake of the Ozarks faculty/staff Q&A with Gary Carrender

Carrender and his wife, Donna, at the 2010 Lake Regional Hospital Ball.
Columbia College academic advisor Gary Carrender has dedicated his professional life to the improvement and advancement of education around the Lake of the Ozarks region. In 1999, after 15 years in teaching and 10 years as principal at School of the Osage, Carrender started his career at Columbia College. He has worked in three different capacities at the college and has excelled in them all. Carrender and his wife, Donna, enjoy going to football and basketball games and spending time with their six grandchildren. Read more about the St. Louis Cardinals fan:
Carrender with Lake campus alumnus, Caleb Rowden, and student Roy Roark at an Education Program social at Baxter’s Lakeside Bar and Grille.
 Name: Gary Carrender
Alma Mater, Date of Graduation: 1968, B.S. in Education, Central Methodist University; 1975, M.A. in History, Lincoln University; 1986, ED Specialist, Secondary Administration, Central Missouri University.
Family members: Wife, Donna; two daughters, two stepchildren, six grandchildren
Years at Columbia College–Lake of the Ozarks: 11-plus years
Hobbies: Hiking, biking, traveling, watching the St. Louis Cardinals, and watching high school and MU football and basketball with Donna. I also enjoy hiking and picnicking with my grandchildren, nieces and nephews. I am going to try some kayaking this summer.
Favorite Movie and/or TV Show: Suspense, legal-type shows, such as the old series “Matlock,” and the current show, “The Good Wife.” I also enjoy comedy, and I think old re-runs of “Seinfeld” and “Cheers” are still my favorites.
Favorite kind of music/favorite artist/song: I like a variety of music.
Favorite Book: I enjoy reading books and magazines focused on politics or history.
Favorite Food: Fall cook-out – roasting hotdogs in the open fire and enjoying a fall evening with family and friends.
Favorite subject in college: American history, government and geography
When I was 10 years old, I wanted to be a trainman on the railroad or a major league baseball player.
What is the best part about working at Columbia College–Lake of the Ozarks? My co-workers, students and the community/professional contacts it provides me.
What moment in your life are you the proudest of? I have many with family and work, past and present, and I am grateful to have them.
Best excuse you have heard from a student who was late with their work? I have heard a lot of them — the ‘creek rises’ often!
What piece of advice would you impart to a student prior to graduation? Celebrate the moment, take pride in your accomplishments and realize your education never stops.
Talk about your journey and what lead you to Columbia College–Lake of the Ozarks: In October of 1999, after 15 years in teaching and 10 years as a principal at School of the Osage, Dr. (John) Keeney gave me the opportunity to teach my first class at Columbia College. My education experiences at School of the Osage and Columbia College have been enjoyable. One session of teaching at Columbia College led to other sessions of teaching and jobs. Over the past 11 years, I have served as an instructor, academic advisor and teacher certification program education coordinator for the Lake campus. I currently serve as part time advisor and field experience liaison for education students. I am grateful for the opportunities that have developed and my experiences at Columbia College.