What was your first job? My first job was a “TV hostess” at Holston Valley Community Hospital during the summer of 1976.
How much were you paid? I was hired for a job making $2.10 an hour renting, then installing small black and white televisions to the end of individual hospital beds at Holston Valley.
Tell us a bit about the job. This involved attaching the TVs that were on a pole to the end of the patient’s bed and then crawling under the bed to hook up the cable. I would then have to collect money daily for the rental of each television that I installed.
How long did you work there? I only worked at the hospital installing TVs for a couple of months.
What did you love about the job? This job was definitely not my dream job, but it taught me a lot about how important interaction and conversations with others can be. I spent the day talking, praying, and visiting with many patients who were lonely and just needed an encouraging word or just a little assistance.
What did you hate about the job? The very worst thing about this job was the fact that I had to uninstall and remove the televisions if they could not pay the daily rental fee.
What do you do know? After this job ended at the end of summer, I started the last semester of my early education/elementary education degree at East Tennessee State University. After graduation, I was employed by Kingsport City Schools for 31-plus years as an educator at Washington Elementary School. After retirement I have continued to stay involved in our community serving on the Kingsport Board of Education and currently serving on the Kingsport Board of Mayor and Aldermen. I also am involved with the Sullivan County Isaiah 117 House and with First Broad Street Child Care Center.
If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
I could go back and give myself one piece of advice I would say to follow your passion. It is a great thing when your career and your passion work together. It is a great feeling when you get paid to do what you love.
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