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Amir Elraheb poses for photo in Harned building

Explore our campus's stories.

Everyone has a story to tell – for some, Austin Peay was the next step after high school, while others first chose to serve their country. Some grew up in the shadow of its campus, while others saw Austin Peay as an opportunity to challenge themselves away from their hometown, state or even country. Many saw one of Austin Peay’s nationally recognized programs as the path to their dream career, while others arrived as freshmen still looking to discover their passion.

But regardless of what brought them here, every student’s story is one of someone impacted by Austin Peay’s mission to find the leader in everyone.

We invite you to meet some of Austin Peay’s past and current students, and discover for yourself what makes each #GovLife unique.

In the College of Arts and Letters students are encouraged to learn and live responsibly and imaginatively, embracing diversity and collaboration as they strive to elucidate the larger human condition and shape intentional, ethical, socially just lives.

Check out all the College of Arts and Letters has to offer here.

Britney Hitch
Bitney Hitch | Communication and Public Relations
“My time at Austin Peay taught me how to build personal relationships and communication skills. My professors really helped me with this and were always ready to give us real-life examples.”
Read Britney's story here
Carlos Carpena
Carlos Carpena | Art + Design
“To me, Austin Peay’s Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts (CECA) is like a portal of endless possibilities for students, where you can take the most relevant information from diverse sources to use it for your benefit. You can take drawing, painting, anything you like, and use it to your benefit. You choose what you want to do, and CECA provides that to you, helps you do that.”
Read Carlos's story here
Christaine Patton in her cap and gown.
Christaine Patton | Broadcast Media
“Going back to school with a daughter is challenging but rewarding. I really want to set an example for my daughter and show her that it doesn’t matter what you go through in life.”
Read Christaine's story here
Alyssa Amos posing on a balcony
Alyssa Amos I Business & Theatre
“At Austin Peay, you are an individual. All the professors here are willing to give you any opportunity you can dream of. That’s so rare. I wouldn’t have experienced all that I have if it hadn’t been for Austin Peay.
Read Alyssa's story here
Katie Boyer oustide
Katie Boyer I Graphic Design
“I think what is so special about Austin Peay is the number of opportunities you are given. There are so many things I’ve done here that I would have never thought I would be able to.”
Read Katie's story here
Garrett Coscolluela poses for photo in football stadium
Garrett Coscolluela | Music Education, Music Performance
“I’m thankful to have spent two years with the Governors’ Own Marching Band and to have been a part of the most visible extension of Austin Peay’s Department of Music.”
Read Garrett's story here
Josh Rees poses outside of harned building
Josh Rees | Spanish
“My professors at Austin Peay have always asked me to think about how I can take what I’m already good at and use that to help a bigger group of people than I have before.”
Read Josh's story here
Leah Grubb poses for photo outside of MMC
Leah Grubb | Corporate Communication
“I didn’t think I’ve have the opportunities to serve at a state school, but when I visited Austin Peay, I couldn’t imagine myself anywhere else.”
Read Leah's story here
Erica Harris poses for photo on Browning lawn
Erica Harris | Theatre and Dance, Student Veteran
“When I went to the Newton Military Family Resource Center, that helped me stay focused and encouraged me to want to do better, because when I was struggling in some of my classes, like biology and math, they had people there who were majoring in that type of thing, and they were more than happy to help, or find help for me.”
Read Erica's story here

Madison Hobson poses for photo outside of MUC
Madison Hobson | English
“Being a Governor means so much more to me than a mascot; it means that I have the power to bring change and be change.”
Read Madison's story here
Jeremy Vega
Jeremy Vega | Art
“Before college I wasn’t social at all, I didn’t have anyone to show my ideas, but here I can show my work and see their reactions, and that makes me want to create more.”
Read Jeremy's story here
Zelda Olesen poses for photo on Browning Lawn
Zelda Olesen | General studies, Minors in Photography and Studio Art, Student Veteran
“I feel more comfortable (at the Newton Military Family Resource Center), for sure. I’m still trying to learn all the stuff; it takes time for me to get out of my comfort zone.”
Read Zelda's story here
Izzy Melvin poses in front of Art and Design building
Izzy Melvin | Graphic Design
“The second I stepped on the grounds here, I knew this is where I wanted to be. My mom looked at me after the orientation, and she said, ‘This is where you’re going to go, I already see it in your face.”
Read Izzy's story here


Nicholas Lee poses for photo outside of Harned building
Nicholas Lee | English
“How can I make myself better and what kind of person do I want to be in 10 years? It’s not about what things will I have, but what kind of person do I want to be?”
Read Nicholas's story here
Rene Villareal poses for photo in MUC
René Villareal | Music Education, Music Performance
“Any concerts I have played, both ensemble and solo, will always be experiences I will remember as I continue towards the end of my degree program at Austin Peay.”
Read Réne's story here
Sarah Eskildson poses for photo on Browning front lawn
Sarah Eskildson | Journalism and Sociology
“My communication degree will equip me to spread the awareness about human trafficking and advocate to end the injustice.”
Read Sarah's story here
Zoe Johnson headshot
Zoe Johnson | Music Performance
“Austin Peay has helped push me to be better and push for bigger and better things. I think Austin Peay has a great music department for that.”
Read More
Meghann Stamps poses for photo outside of MMC building
Meghann Stamps | Broadcast Media
I always knew from a young age – from a very, very young age – that I enjoyed talking, especially on camera. I just knew this is what I wanted to be.”
Read Meghann's story here
Susannah White poses for photo in MMC auditorium
Susannah White | Music
“Music is a gift that touches our souls and gives us understanding when reasoning is absent, and Austin Peay's music program gave me opportunity: opportunity to teach, learn, flourish and love music.”
Read Susannah's story here
Michael Hunter
Michael Hunter | Graphic Design
“There’s a lot of personal growth that I’ve experienced here. It’s really changed my outlook and perspective on not only my career path but life in general.”
Read Michael's story here
Gwendoline Berger
Gwendoline Berger | English Language and Literature
“The English classes here are so much more interesting. Every class is so interesting and the way they teach is so different. They are more about the interaction with the student.”
Read Gwendoline's story here
Patricia Hammock
Patricia Hammock | Communication Arts and Journalism
“Of course, I have fear but my faith is stronger. I believe my professional experiences can serve as a light along the path of others. My motivation is pure. My goal is to serve others. I believe that will be rewarded.”
Read Patricia's story here
Khari Turner
Khari Turner | Studio Art
“The education I'm receiving is important because my painting is informed only by the things I know. If I don't know anything, then I'm not painting.”
Read Khari's story here
Heather Gauthier
Heather Gauthier | Instrumental Music Education
“Austin Peay is the best decision I’ve ever made. It just feels like family. It feels like home.”
Read Heather's story here
Daniel Cole
Daniel Cole | History, Minor in Military Science
“The ROTC faculty and staff allows for the success of not only myself, but for all ROTC students. They are committed to ensuring that we become not only strong, successful leaders, but great students as well.”
Read Daniel's story here
Darrion Wiley-Hunt
Darrion Wiley-Hunt | Public Relations, minor in Event Planning
“The main thing that has made me successful here is the experience I’ve been granted to allow me to be authentic. I’ve been able to grow and learn so much based on opportunities granted from the person I am.”
Read Darrion's story here
Ebony Walton
Ebony Walton | Graphic Design
“I came to Austin Peay with barely any design knowledge and left as a graphic designer ready to take on the world.”
Read Ebony's story here

The College of Behavioral and Health Sciences' highly-credentialed and experienced faculty will teach you the skills needed to succeed as a health professional. Our programs allow you opportunities to practice your new talents in real life situations. Our educators will work closely with you to develop a program of study mentoring you throughout you academic path.

Check out all the College of Behavioral and Health Sciences has to offer here.

Isabelle Stapp headshot
Isabelle Stapp | Political Science
“I get to do a lot of stuff with the community. I work with a lot of local politicians, and I’ve met the secretary of the state and do a lot of voter registration drives. That’s a big part of it, getting people to vote and do their civic duty.”
Read Isabelle's story here
Skylar Smith headshot
Skylar Smith | Criminal Justice
“Whenever you are entering different majors, you feel like you don’t know what you are doing, and my professors have been more than willing to help me understand the next steps I must take to go in the direction of the field I want to go in."
Read Skylar's story here
Sierra Salandy poses in Browning lobby
Sierra Salandy | Political Science
“I feel like I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve definitely learned a lot about politics. It’s challenged me in all the right ways.”
Read Sierra's story here


Jenny Hernandez poses for photo in Foy
Jenny Hernandez | Health and Human Performance
"When people ask me about Austin Peay, I tell them the truth: I love this campus and it's the best choice I could have ever made."
Read Jenny's story here

Haley Baker poses for photo in classroom
Haley Baker | Sociology
“The whole sociology staff is amazing. I wouldn’t be here without them. They have really helped me home in on what I really care about, and they are able to give you the extra bit that you need. They’re always open and willing to speak to anyone. That’s amazing.”
Read Haley's story here
Christopher Trice poses for photo in BCM
Christopher Trice | Social Work
“I have a vision of one day branching out and having my own ministry, and Austin Peay is showing me ways to be a role model who helps people and puts them on the right path in life.”
Read Christopher's story here
Derrick Tims poses for photo in Library
Derrick Tims | Psychology
“To me, being a “Gov” means that you constantly challenge yourself to be better than you were the day before.”
Read Derrick's story here

Rene Villareal poses for photo in MUC
Jessica Sheers | Nursing
“My hands-on internship experience was more than just shadowing someone; the real work I did solidified my desire to be a nurse.”
Read Jessica's story here

Hunter Burkhart poses for photo in McCord
Hunter Burkhart | Nursing
“The program at Austin Peay has been great for building my confidence and showing me that Austin Peay nurses really do make some great nurses.”
Read Hunter's story here
Joshua Russell poses for photo in Memorial Health Building
Joshua Russell | Criminal Justice
“I had the opportunity to go to any ROTC program I wanted, but I figured why not go to the best and that was Austin Peay.”
Read Joshua's story here
Loren Carmichael poses for photo in UC Plaza
Loren Carmichael | Psychology
“I loved the feeling of closeness and home I felt when I walked around on my first tour. At Austin Peay I don’t feel like a number, I feel like I am a part of something meaningful.”
Read Loren's story here
Natalie Castillo
Natalie Castillo | Psychological Science
“I like to think everyone is a superhero, but we just have to unlock our own unique superpowers — and a degree in psychological science is going to help me unlock and use my superpower.”
Read Natalie's story here
Rebecca Morelock poses for photo outside Ellington building
Rebecca Morelock | Health and Human Performance
“I knew Austin Peay had a great military presence, it was close to the Fort Campbell, and I could easily transition from one school to the next and graduate in a timely manner.”
Read Rebecca's story here
Thomas Fuss poses for photo in Clement building
Thomas Fuss | Sociology and Political Science
“My greatest fear coming here (after a 22-year career in the Army) was I only knew about college what I had seen on TV. With the professors, I thought there’d be animosity because we’d all be about the same age. But when I started, it wasn’t like that at all.”
Read Thomas's story here
Vanessa Paniagua-Rodriguez poses for photo in Clement building
Vanessa Rodriguez-Paniagua | Sociology
“When I went to community college, I didn’t lead. I literally went to school and left. Being here, I feel like I’ve had a lot of encouragement from my professors to do that extra thing. For me that’s being the leader I knew I could always be but needed that extra push to achieve. I’ve appreciated that a lot.”
Read Vanessa's story here
Sarah Sullivan
Sarah Sullivan | Nursing
“If you aren’t challenged, you aren’t learning.”
Read Sarah's story here
Mallory Fundora
Mallory Fundora | Social Work
“I have high expectations for Austin Peay to help me grow as a leader. And I’m very excited to see what the future holds.”
Read Mallory's story here
Oliver Smith
Oliver Smith | Nursing
“Overwhelmingly you just hear about Austin Peay’s nursing program. In high school, it’s all I heard – Austin Peay has a good nursing program. It’s the best public nursing program you can get in Tennessee.”
Read Oliver's story here

The APSU College of Business is a teaching-focused business school committed to student success while serving the Clarksville and Nashville metropolitan areas. We strive to push students beyond the text book and help them explore their passions, in order to empower our graduates to compete in a global economy.

Check out all the College of Business has to offer here.

Rebekah White Headshot
Rebekah White | Business Marketing
“I think the biggest thing about being at Austin Peay is the connections that you make. Just with the professors I know, they have taught me so much about marketing and the world of business.”
Read Rebekah's story here
Kyrstin Young headshot
Kyrstin Young | Business Management
“I really want people to just take a step back and realize the world we live in and understand that it’s only going to change if we change it.”
Read Kyrstin's story here
Alexis Larkin poses for photo outside of MUC
Alexis Larkin | Marketing
“Because I made the decision to come to Austin Peay, I’ve been exposed to so many people and different ways of life that I wouldn’t have if I had chosen to stay in Ohio for school.”
Read Alexis's story here
Wesley Gray poses for photo in Kimbrough
Wesley Gray | Business Management
“I really like online classes for my schedule. On top of being a student-athlete, being in ROTC and a few other organizations, it’s made my life much easier.”
Read Wesley's story here
Jacob Knight
Jacob Knight | Business Management
“I knew I wanted to be here and be a Gov. I wasn’t joining a university I was joining a family.”
Read Jacob's story here
Katherine Alba
Katherine Alba | Business Management
“I chose to attend this University because of the amazing reputation the school and the APSU ROTC program has. Before I started here, I constantly heard great things about the school from students, alumni and staff.”
Read Katherine's story here
Jenna Pry
Jenna Pry | Marketing
“I wanted to go to a bigger school, but I’m glad I go here because it’s smaller, I’m with my friends, and the classes have 20 people, so I’m able to connect with my professor.”
Read Jenna's story here

The Martha Dickerson Eriksson College of Education's departments of Teaching and Learning and Educational Specialties offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs that will give you the training you need to be successful in our classroom and in yours. Our various Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) programs provide multiple avenues for career changers and college graduates in other disciplines to prepare themselves to become teachers. The Doctorate of Educational Leadership will prepare you for a variety of positions from state and district leadership roles to educational research careers.

Check out all the Eriksson College of Education has to offer here.

Sibyl Brush
Sibyl Brush I Pre K - Third Special Education
“If you’re interested in any organizations at APSU, join. It is a scary thing, but if you’re doing something that you love, chances are you will meet life-long friends and it will change your outlook on college.”
Read Sibyl's story here
Makayla Boisseau
Makayla Boisseau | Elementary Education
“Austin Peay provided me with so many opportunities to get involved with leadership. I had previously been involved with leadership roles in high school and outside of school, but organizations like the National Society of Leadership and Success helped me get out of my comfort zone on campus. It helped me make the connections and build up the confidence in order to form the Clay Target Club.”
Read Makayla's story here

The College of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM)'s outstanding, discipline-based programs are student-centered and designed to prepare students for responsible positions at all levels of research, industry, education, medicine, and government positions.

Check out all the College of STEM has to offer here.

Jennifer Stevens
Jennifer Stevens I Engineering Technology
“I knew that I had to do something that I always wanted to pursue,” she said. “I had to take care of my kid and finally chase my dreams.”
Read More
Alex Baum
Alex Baum I Agriculture
“I knew I wanted to go out of state for college. When I saw an email from Austin Peay, I researched their pre-vet program and the city of Clarksville and absolutely fell in love! I had a strong feeling that this is where I wanted to be.”
Read More
Jason Chavez sitting under a pavilion.
Jason Chavez-Rivas I Biology
“I’ve grown up here, so Austin Peay was a popular landmark. My dad and brother went here, so I knew this was a good option.”
Read Jason's story here
Alex Edwards infront of a mural.
Alex Edwards | Mathematics Education
“I continue to choose Austin Peay every single day because these people have become my second family.”
Read Alex's story here
Alexis Hill poses for photo on Softball field
Alexis Hill | Biology
“Austin Peay has treated me way better than I ever thought it could have, and if I had to do it all over again, I’d still choose to go to this University.”
Read Alexis's story here
Brinna Lavelle poses in MMA training area
Brinna Lavelle | Biology, Pre-Vet
“I realized this is what life is about, I have to put in the work and push myself fully to get the grade that I want.”
Read Brinna's story here
Waqas Ahmed poses for photo in Sundquist
Waqas Ahmed | Biology/Pre-Med
"When I visited Austin Peay, I fell in love with this place and its opportunities."
Read Waqas's story here
Robyn Yates poses for photo in Maynard building
Robyn Yates | Computer Science
“Austin Peay gave me a new beginning, an opportunity. I had no direction, no clue what I wanted to do. Now I’m so excited and ready to rule the world with code. I’m stoked.”
Read Robyn's story here


Colin Crist poses for photo in SGA conference room
Colin Crist | Physics
“Being a part of Austin Peay Army ROTC has shown me that, in order to become a leader, I have to first be a team player and learn to be a follower.”
Read Colin's story here
Elijah Carter plays violin in front of MUC
Elijah Carter | Computer Science
“To me, ‘Be a Gov’ means to know that you're going to meet incredible challenges and roadblocks but to still work and push through them.”
Read Elijah's story here
Joshua Allen poses for photo in Sundquist lab
Joshua Allen | Physics
“I had this fear that students from bigger schools would be ahead of me, but what I quickly realized was that we were covering things I had already learned because I had been prepared by Austin Peay.”
Read Joshua's story here
Luke Cecil poses for photo outside of Maynard building
Luke Cecil | Computer Science
“I wanted to go somewhere where no one knew me and where I could be my own person, and Austin Peay provided me that opportunity.”
Read Luke's story here
Amanda McNair
Amanda McNair | Computer Science
“As I’ve learned more and different (computer) languages, I feel so much more confident. My communication skills are better, and now that I’m a senior, my leadership skills are on point, and I know they’ll get better.”
Read Amanda's story here
Gabrielle Rueff
Gabrielle Rueff | Pre Med-Biology
“I’ve found my identity here at APSU. I think college is a pivotal time in a young person’s life and the environment in which they develop is extremely important. Austin Peay has been amazing because it has allowed me to pursue my passion of science in a way that has been incredibly enjoyable.”
Read Gabrielle's story here
Lynn von Hagen
Lynn von Hagen | Biology
“APSU is special to me because I felt like the daunting task of being a returning student was assuaged by the kindness of both the teachers and my fellow students.”
Read Lynn's story here
Nathan Nickelson
Nathan Nickelson | Computer Science
“Austin Peay offers so many opportunities outside of class to help students along the way to find better job opportunities and to make better career choices.”
Read Nathan's story here
Jane Seage
Jane Seage | Physics, Classics double major
“Austin Peay has provided a lot of opportunities for me that I might not have gotten at a bigger school. You get a lot of individual-level learning with your professors. It feels more approachable. I’ve definitely learned more about myself.”
Read Jane's story here
Stacy McAllister-Brooks
Stacy McAllister-Brooks | Chemistry
“APSU’s student body is a family. There is a sense of comradery that is palpable. I don’t think that I could have accomplished all that I have accomplished while in college without the support of the other brilliant, hardworking students that attend this university.”
Read Stacy's story here

The College of Graduate Studies at Austin Peay State University fosters an intellectual community of advanced learning within an environment of scholarship, research and creative activities, and engages faculty and students with partnerships representative of a global society.

Check out all the College of Graduate Studies has to offer here. 


Joy Cheatham poses for photo in Maynard building
Joy Cheatham | PSM in Predictive Analytics
“Many companies have teams with members in multiple locations, and APSU’s online classes, projects and discussions has really helped me grow as a leader.”
Read Joy's story here
Celeste Malone poses for photo outside MUC
Celeste Malone | Graduate, Communication
“APSU has continuously challenged and pushed me to become the person I am today.”
Read Celeste's story here
Adolph Dagan poses for photo in his Rossview High School classroom
Adolph Dagan | ('14) Education
“I want to encourage others to excel, that come from other countries and believe that learning and the curriculum at Austin Peay is difficult. They can do it and it can be done.”
Read Adolph's story here
Austin Derden poses for photo in Miltary Student Center
Austin Derden | Graduate, Mental Health Counseling
“I get to do a great service to not only military-affiliated students and veterans, but anybody can come use the (Newton Military Family Resource Center) and use our textbook program. I greatly enjoy expanding on that program. We really provide a heck of service.”
Read Austin's story here
Emmanuel Méjeun poses for photo in MMC
Emmanuel Méjeun | ('17) Music Performance
“Everything about my story is tied to music: it’s my passion, it’s my love, it’s going to be my job — It’s everything to me.”
Read Emmanuel's story here
Narina Jusufovic poses for photo inside Sundquist lab
Nerina Jusufovic | Graduate, Biology
“America is where I’m from. I’m an American citizen, my parents and sister are American citizens — yes, I still love Bosnia, but I have assimilated, not separated, and I identify as an American.”
Read Nerina's story here
Shawn Harding
Shawn Harding | Political Science
“As a student, it was an amazing adventure here at Austin Peay, being able to do what I do. I liked the way Austin Peay approaches students and classroom sizes. For me, it was the better option.”
Read Shawn's story here
Michael Johnson
Michael Johnson | Doctor of Education: Educational Leadership
“I have long aspired to have a doctorate and knowing that it was going to be the first doctoral class at Austin Peay was a deciding factor. With it being a college that was created for teachers, it seemed like the perfect university to get an educational leadership degree from. It’s continuing a tradition of excellence, of high standards.”
Read Michael's story here