Learning never stops for Fallowfield Towship art educator Mohney
“Doors opened for me. One door closed; another opened.”
This is how Fallowfield Towship's Suzan Mohney describes her nearly five decades-long career in art education – a career which was recently enhanced by obtaining a doctorate degree from Walden University.
Graduating with a class of 1,100 at the National Harbor in Washington, D.C. on July 12, Mohney, 70, reflected on her lifelong love of art and teaching that began at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, bringing her to this high achievement.
Mohney's teaching began at Belle Vernon Middle School, landing her first job before graduation. During the several years she worked at Belle Vernon, Mohney obtained her master's degree before starting a family with her high school sweetheart and husband, Jay.
Back then when you were expecting, you had to leave your job when you began “showing,” Mohney explained, so Mohney became a stay-at-home mother for several years to her two sons, Jay and Jeff.
Opportunity knocked again when a position opened at Charleroi. Mohney was hired and worked at Charleroi as an art teacher for about 30 years.
During her years at Charleroi Area, Mohney met Joy Gazi, the art teacher from Bentworth Elementary School. The two educators shared an enthusiasm for teaching and a philosophy of teaching art chronologically and in context with other subjects, quickly becoming friends and close colleagues.
Together, the educators wrote a program, “Making Friends with Art History,” which is held in different locations yearly.
Mohney has since moved on in her teaching career to Carlow University, then to California University of Pennsylvania, where she still teaches. Her working relationship and friendship with Gazi has endured, though. Gazi works with Mohney's student teachers from the university, and they still “talk art,” according to Mohney.
Mohney has taught so many students over the years, she laughs that she could “fill up a stadium.”
“I remember all of them,” she says.
After her son posted Mohney's doctorate degree achievement on Facebook, he was flooded with responses and well wishes from students Mohney taught throughout the years.
“Some of my college kids were ones I taught in elementary,” she says.
With no intentions of slowing down, Mohney loves her busy life with her students and with her “wonderful, supportive husband.”
Sons Jay and Jeff, who reside out of state, enjoy careers in technology and filmmaking.
An avid hockey fan, Mohney says she has been going to Pittsburgh Penguins games for 30 years in her free time. Mohney loves painting and working with fabrics, as well, but has little spare time to pursue either with such a busy schedule. As an art professor once told her, “My art is coming up with ideas for the students.”
Mohney hopes to continue her career and has no immediate plans for retirement.
“I love what I do. I have so much experience that I want to share with another generation.”
Miranda Startare is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- DEP cites Monessen coke plant 6 times
- Pa. Supreme Court decision may reopen Monessen health office
- Ex-mayor gets keys, deed to former Donora bank
- Gutierrez out to unify Donora residents
- Community Bank, FedFirst celebrate merger in Rostraver
- Monessen faces $350K shortfall
- No tax hike anticipated in Fallowfield
- Tax rate to remain unchanged in North Belle Vernon
- New Manos Theatre opened in glorious fashion in Monessen
- Ringgold OKs bond issue for new school
- Mon City arrests net 183 stamp bags of heroin