Assistant Professor of Special Education
Glenda Hyer says it takes a patient person to be involved in special education. Yet, she admits that she’s not patient “at all.”
But her passion for helping special students and inspiring new teachers both academically and professionally puts Hyer’s lack of patience at ease.
“I just love working with the students and believe that everyone has unique gifts and strengths,” Hyer said. “Everyone has something to offer society.”
Hyer said she enjoys sharing her enthusiasm for her subject matter.
“The feedback I receive from teacher candidates pushes me to be a better teacher,” she said. “I love learning and I love the interaction between professor and students. My job is never boring.”
After earning her undergraduate degree in recreational therapy and studio art, Hyer taught mainly in private schools in North Carolina for 10 years where she “fell in love” with special education.
She received her master’s in special education from Western Carolina University in 2007, and served as grant coordinator and visiting professor there until she earned her Doctor of Education in special education from Liberty University in 2012.
Hyer received the 2014-2015 Faculty Excellence Award at Henderson State for her research in special education. She has also published several articles and a book chapter.
Special education is a “very rewarding” career, Hyer said.
“You get to see improvements in your students’ learning every day, and you really make a difference in the lives of the students,” she said.
Hyer said her job is most satisfying when teacher candidates grasp the concepts of special education and understand that there is not a “normal” in society.
“And when they are able to put those concepts I have taught into practice with students with disabilities, it is most rewarding,” she said.
When she’s away from the classroom, Hyer said she likes to paint, hike, and camp.
“Pretty much anything outdoors,” she said, including hunting for Bigfoot. “I’m definitely a Bigfoot fan.”
If she wasn’t in the teaching field, Hyer said she would like to hike the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, and then work for the Forestry Service.
Advanced Instructional Studies
Degree and School:
Doctorate in Special Education, Liberty University, 2012
• Teaching academics to students with severe to profound disabilities
• Strategies to help students with disabilities in the general education setting
I've been at Henderson since: