Title: Sociology Professor (Retired)
Location: Canton, Ohio, United States
Linda Stafford, Sociology Professor, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in sociology education.
Dr. Stafford is a great example of how following your interests can lead to a rewarding and fulfilling career. After attending business school and receiving a secretarial degree, she worked at a company for a short time before it closed due to internal problems. In the search for a new job, she stumbled upon an advertisement for a growth group and ended up becoming a group leader of divorce groups. This position lead to her returning to her education to receive a bachelor’s in psychology and then a Master of Arts in social gerontology. She earned these degrees in 1982 and 1988, respectively, from the University of Akron. She later received a PhD in sociology from the institution in 1995. While matriculating, Dr. Stafford began teaching at the University of Akron. From 1997 to 1999, she taught as an adjunct professor at Mount Union College. From 2000 to 2009, she worked as an assistant professor at Kent State University.
In her career, Dr. Stafford is most proud of the way her students responded to her when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. While undergoing radiation and chemotherapy treatments, she decided to continue teaching. Her students became more present in her life, offering to carry her books, mow her lawn and other chores to help. Dr. Stafford felt the support from her student’s immensely. In teaching sociology, Dr. Stafford often poses different subjects to her students and how it relates to their lives. She feels the response they had to her diagnosis was a way they showed they had learned something. While teaching, Dr. Stafford was always open with her students and remained easily accessible. She designed her courses so that they were focused on learning and using critical thinking skills. Her students had to do a lot of writing. She tried to give them the skills necessary to go out into the world and be productive.
Dr. Stafford is certified in gerontology through the University of Akron. She continues to serve on the Call Committee and is a choir member of the Messiah Lutheran Church. She was previously President of the Church Board of Firestone Park Lutheran. From 1985 to 1986, Dr. Stafford provided her expertise as a program evaluator with Foster Grandparents. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, traveling and gardening.
Contact Dr. Stafford