The Real 007 Celebrates a Lifetime of ‘Continuing Education’ Through LCCC

Still proud of her antiquated student number “00007,” Georgeane Sue Jeager Poplar remembers the excitement of attending her first class at Lorain County Community College. It was 1964, before the college had its permanent campus on Abbe Road, and courses were held at Garford Elementary School in Elyria. Poplar’s family couldn’t afford to send her away to college, so she was grateful for the opportunity to earn an associate degree locally.

You’ve heard of 007? Georgeane Sue is student 00007 at LCCC. Today, at 76, she is still working in education.

“It was a brick elementary building and it had three floors,” Poplar recalls. “And I remember sitting in those classes and just being really excited that I was in college, learning and meeting lots of people.”

Poplar’s enthusiasm for learning didn’t come without worry though. And it took some supportive professors to instill confidence in the young Poplar. Professors she remembers to this day.

“Mr. Gallagher was my American history teacher, and he did a wonderful job,” she says. “He told us he was going to teach his class like he would at one of those state universities. And he did.”

After graduating, there was a teacher shortage in Lorain County, so Poplar began teaching fifth grade in Amherst. At the age of 19, she was less than a decade older than her students.

“The first year of teaching is always very challenging, but I loved it,” she says. “Those students liked me a lot because I was young, and I had lots of energy. They had a lot of fun in my class. Way too much fun, probably.”

That first, memorable academic year began a lifelong career in education. Poplar spent many of her teaching years in Amherst, where she grew up. There she taught kindergarten, third, fourth and fifth grades. She also spent time as a guidance counselor and intervention specialist.

Georgeane’s graduation day photo, 1966.

Throughout the decades, Poplar has often been a student herself. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Kent State University and her master’s degree from The Ohio State University. Eventually, Poplar found her way back to LCCC, and her old “00007” student number, when she decided to earn a special education certificate through LCCC’s University Partnership with Ashland University. Poplar was thrilled to have bragging rights with the younger students and yet another avenue to boost an already successful and rewarding career.

Today, at 76, Poplar is still working in education. She’s an intervention specialist at Pathways to Success in Oberlin. She knows she’ll retire one day. But for now, she simply “can’t seem to let it go.” And she cherishes the place it all began.

“LCCC gave me the opportunity of a lifetime to get into education,” she says. “I am absolutely sure of that.”

LCCC classes begin January 16. Register and more at www.lorainccc.edu/enroll.

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