Title: Lead Faculty, General Education
Highest degree and school: Master of Public Administration, University of Illinois at Springfield
Teaching at SDI since: 2021
Thea Miller began her career in higher education in 2002, focusing on online education at the Bachelor and Master levels. Since that time, she has held various positions at the management and director level. She currently serves SDI as a lead faculty, teaching American Government and faculty orientation. Her experience in both student services and faculty services provides unique insights as to how institutions can work cooperatively (internally and externally) to provide a public service. Prior to higher education, she worked in the public sector with the Illinois Department of Human Services and with the Chicago Park District. Both organizations provided various levels of service to constituents at the State level and local level, respectively. Thea also holds a Certificate in Non-Profit Management and was a founding member of a non-profit in Springfield, IL.
Thea has always sought opportunities to work with students who are in the beginning stages of their academic program. She chose SDI because she enjoys the fresh perspective these students tend to bring to the classroom and their positive energy for learning new information. When asked what she enjoys most about teaching, she said that every new class presents an opportunity to not only share knowledge, but also to learn something new; “I’m always impressed with the diverse experiences and viewpoints that students share in the classroom. Our SDI students are some of the hardest working students that I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with and I am honored to be able to help support their educational and professional goals through our studies.”
As life tends to be very busy, Thea said the chance to slow down and just spend quiet time visiting with her family is always appealing. She also enjoys traveling to new places, exploring different cultures, and learning about history, so strolling through a museum or venturing through the historical areas of a new city is her idea of a perfect vacation; “I would choose visiting a National Monument over a sandy beach any day.” She shared that one bucket list goal she has is to learn to play the guitar.