Centre News

20 Questions with First Lady Susie Roush

August 22, 2013        
photo John and Susie at the recent Governor's School for the Arts
2014 announcement.
1. Position at Centre?
"P" Roush's wife and his favorite volunteer—a non-paid position, but it has a lot of nice perks!

2. Where did you grow up (and describe the place in one phrase or sentence)?
Dover, Ohio—home to Mooney Warther, "World's Master Carver"—a great town with great people where one could stand on almost any street corner and see the corn and bean fields.

3. What are your hobbies?
Spending time with family, spending time outside, and working with photography—none of which I do as much as I would like.

4. What is your dream vacation?
A week on a ranch with the ENTIRE family—fly fishing, hiking, riding, gaming, laughing, talking, eating and sleeping!

5. Favorite artist and/or work of art?
Artist(s): Our grandchildren
Work of art: Anything they make for "Gummy and Poppy"

6. Favorite novel or poem?
Novel: To Kill A Mocking Bird by Harper Lee
Poem: "The Bridge Builder" by Will Allen Dromgoole

7. Favorite sport (to watch or play)?
Whatever sport is in season, though I'm not a fan of boxing or extreme sports.

8. Favorite TV show?
I don't watch much TV, but if it's on, it's usually the news, a sporting event, KET or Animal Planet.

9. Favorite album?
"Mom's Funky Mix" by Luke and Mark, our sons.

10. Favorite holiday?

11. Favorite food?
Anything with dark chocolate and nuts!

12. Most prized possession?
First things that come to mind are family, friends and health, but those aren't really "possessions." So, I guess I'd have to say my little dog, "B", my 19-year-old car, "Mini", and my photographs and scrapbooks.

13. Three people, living or deceased, whom you'd invite to the same dinner party?
I'd prefer a dinner party for six! Christ, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Abraham Lincoln, Johnny Wooden and Rick Axtell. Then I'd stand at the door and listen.

14. Favorite aspect of your job?
Having the opportunity to get to know so many students, faculty and staff.

15. Most memorable experience of your youth?
In general, my most memorable experience was the simple freedom I had to grow, develop and explore in a not-so-rushed and scary world! I had three sisters—we lived with our parents in a small town isolated from the larger society. It was a safe place where most moms were close to the kitchen window and could keep tabs on us and our friends as we moved about the neighborhood. There were no youth leagues (except for boys' little league baseball). We "picked-up" our own games—often kick-ball in the street or school yard. Jumping rope and hop-scotch were big, too. One day we found a big old radio in someone's trash pile, and spent hours with our dad's screwdrivers taking the thing apart and putting it back together in different forms. We were always on our bikes —nobody had (or had ever seen) a bike helmet—thank goodness that's changed! On Saturday mornings, we'd hike across the hay field where we'd make a campfire and have our lunch—close to an old bath tub trough (under a big oak) filled by a spring (with salamanders). There, we'd talk and laugh as only kids can when they're uninterrupted by "organized" play. In our homes, everyone had a five-digit phone number and three or four families shared a line so "phone time" was brief. Early on we didn't have TVs, and when we did, there was only a channel or two (always black and white and usually fuzzy). Programming was just a couple hours in the evening and always ended with a picture of an American flag and the playing of "the Star-Spangled Banner." Except for the Dairy Queen, there were no fast-food restaurants—everyone went home to eat dinner with their families. In many ways, kids have so much more today—in other ways, they have so much less.

16. What would you be doing if you weren't working at Centre?
Probably spending more time with family and friends and, hopefully, finding another way to serve.

17. Educational experience that's been most helpful to you?

18. Fictional character in whose shoes you'd love to spend a day?
Walter Mitty

19. Favorite place on campus (and why)?
Craik House, because it's a grand old college house and because it's our home! I also love the space between Crounse and Sutcliffe—beyond the arch, back by the giant oak tree—there's a peace and quiet there . . . and a bench.

20. Advice you'd give to a first-year college student to make success more likely?
The definition of success . . . "a favorable result; wished-for ending; good fortune." I would suggest that first-year students (and upper classmen as well) be open and committed to searching for what is their passion and "wished-for ending." Then, work towards that goal, learning as much as they can from those around them. Understanding, of course, that the "wished-for ending" may change from time to time—not only in college but as one moves through life. I have a feeling that at the end of it all, our feeling of success may have a lot to do with how we served others.

Centre College, founded in 1819, offers its students a world of opportunities, highlighted by the nation's premier study abroad program and a faculty ranked #5 in the nation for "Best Undergraduate Teaching" at a liberal arts college by U.S. News & World Report. Centre graduates enjoy extraordinary success, with entrance to top graduate and professional schools, prestigious fellowships for further study abroad (Rhodes, Rotary, Fulbright), and rewarding jobs (on average, 97 percent are employed or in advanced study within 10 months of graduation).

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