It's been great to see the influence i've had since becoming a teacher. nothing touches me more than seeing former students succeeding and current students achieving "a-ha" moments!

"Those who educate children well are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only gave them life, those the art of living well."

                                             --Aristotle

My History

After quite a few years in another profession and in business for myself, I decided to make a change. My interest in foreign language and a need to be "of value" in some way led me to Piedmont College's School of Education. Fortunately, Piedmont had begun a program that was designed especially for the "non-traditional" student . . .those of us who had day jobs and needed to take classes at night. It was a perfect fit.

Learning in adulthood was challenging and exciting! I was able to bring a lot of life experience to the classroom and make connections to new information that was going to make me a teacher. Within a couple of years, I received my B.A. in Spanish Education, took my teacher certification exam, and was on my way to a new endeavor.

It has been a few years of teaching in middle and high school, working as an elementary level administrator, and serving as a School Improvement Consultant. Here I am . . . back at Piedmont as a professor. A perfect fit.



This is Michael and Donna. They love to travel.

They have enjoyed trekking through cities and villages in the Colonial Region of Mexico. Exploring off-the-beaten-path places in the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. And this year (2013) they had a wonderful time driving through a great portion of Europe.

This is Michael. He likes to do really fun stuff.

Michael's journey through life has presented many unique opportunities, challenges, and experiences. All of these have come together to make him who he is and what he continues to make of himself.

J Michael Shirley PhD



our footprints fade quickly,

but our words can

influence for

generations.