Freeman Culver – Determined. Teacher. Mentor.
As the first in his family to graduate from college, Freeman Dantell Culver III, a professor at Connors State College, feels a kinship to many of his students.
“The majority of students attending Connors are the first in their family to attend college,” said Culver. “CSC fosters an environment that supports first-generation students. The faculty and staff at Connors State College are concerned about students being successful in the classroom and in life.”
This concern resonates deeply with Culver. Growing up in Alabama, the heart of the Civil Rights Movement, he and his two siblings were raised by their mother. His high school counselor counted him out, telling him university life was beyond his reach.
“Her words were more destructive than an atomic bomb, but I moved on,” he said. “I can recall my household being full of love, but there were some aspects of comfort missing. Our house was cold in the winter and extremely hot in the summer, yet my mother pushed forth with all of her might to provide for us.”
Culver learned responsibility at an early age and soon realized he wanted to be an educator. With the help of faculty mentors at Tuskegee University and the University of Alabama, he was able to overcome the roadblocks in his way.
“I learned that you have to believe in yourself and work hard,” said Culver. “You have to be willing to listen to good mentors that are placed in your life.”
Culver obtained his degrees in history and American studies from Tuskegee University and the University of Alabama.
“I chose to teach at Connors State College, because I wanted to make a difference in the lives of students. I like working with all students at CSC, particularly non-traditional students – the displaced worker, the returning soldier, the single mom. Often these students have to manage work, family obligations and studies,” he said. “I can only imagine what they go through, especially single parents that have to manage raising a child, paying bills, and studying for my chapter quizzes. This is the best part of my job. To educate and assist students in making their lives better by equipping them with information.”
Culver currently teaches U.S. History, Oklahoma History, American Federal Government and College Orientation, at CSC. He is also the faculty advisor for the Social Sciences Club and a strong supporter of all CSC athletics teams.