Finding Greatness: Kayla Bawkin

Author: News Bureau
Posted: Monday, January 25, 2016 1:18 PM
Categories: Finding Greatness | School of Education and Behavioral Sciences | School of Education | Students

Macon, GA

Kayla Web
Student-athlete Kayla Bawkin, an aspiring teacher and coach, excels on and off the field.

Full Name: Kayla Diane Bawkin.

Age: 21.

Hometown: Hoboken.

Residence: Cochran.

High School: Brantley County High School, where she participated in softball, basketball, track, National Honors Society, Young Apprentice Program.

Family: “Wendy Norris, my mother, role model, rock and inspiration; Danny Norris, stepfather and biggest supporter; Denise Reeves, my aunt and best friend.”

Employment: Full-time student.

Degree Objective: Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Special Education.

Class Rank: Junior.

Primary Campus: Cochran.

Activities: Middle Georgia State Knights softball team.

Career Goals: “One of my career goals is to become an elementary school teacher in a Title I school system and be the head coach of a high school varsity softball team. I’m also interested in assistant coaching a high school basketball team. Eventually, I want a master’s degree in Special Education. I have a huge heart for helping and encouraging people to achieve to the best of their ability. I hope one day to be a shining light in the lives of my students and players. I want to be a great role model for them to look up to.”

She chose Middle Georgia State University because … “I received a softball scholarship. I accepted my scholarship to Middle Georgia State because I really liked how well the campus in Cochran was designed. The fact that all of the buildings are close together and they are mostly organized by majors really appealed to me. I fell in love with the Wellness Center as soon as I stepped inside. I also like that the campus isn’t very big.”

The greatest thing she discovered about Middle Georgia State after she enrolled was … “How the staff is very helpful and friendly. If I ever need anything, I can always count on Coach Ken Phillips, Darius Dennard or Greg Rowland to handle any situation. They are so reliable and will do anything to help me succeed.”

Her greatest academic experience so far as a Middle Georgia State student has been … “Enrolling into the School of Education. The Early Childhood Special Education program has really opened my eyes and made me realize my calling. I would not trade hours of doing key assessments, stressing over deadlines, all of Dr. Shamani Shikwambi’s ‘why’ questions and going into placement for NOTHING! Being in the classroom with my students has been the biggest blessing of all.”

To her, “greatness” means … “Going above and beyond to accomplish your goals. Greatness is stepping beyond boundaries and overcoming adversity. You have to have the mindset that you can do anything as long as you’re willing to put forth the hard work and effort. Never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.”

One thing people don’t know about her is … “I have a huge heart for helping others. I will go so far beyond my comfort zone just to ensure somebody gets the help they need.”

The one person she’d most like to meet is … “Ellen DeGeneres. I would love to meet her because she is extremely funny, but she also loves to help others. I think a day with her would be filled with nothing but laughter and great times.”

What she sees herself doing in the first five years after she graduates … “Professionally, I see myself as an elementary school teacher, working on my master’s in Special Education and coaching a high school softball team. Personally, I see myself living in my own house with a husband, owning my own car and possibly having a child.”

Photo by Greg Rowland.