Pearl River's humanities teacher of the year: Dr. Rudy Gatlin

HATTIESBURG, Miss – Dr. Rudy Gatlin, a music and psychology instructor at the Forrest County Center, is Pearl River Community College’s Humanities Teacher of the Year for 2019-20.

Gatlin, 47, who has more than 25 years in the education profession, also serves as advisor to the Travel Club, the Music Club and the Social Science Club. 

The Mississippi Humanities Council annually recognizes teachers from all regions of the state with the award. Each honoree receives a $500 honorarium and presents a special lecture in his discipline to the community.

Gatlin’s lecture on The Psychology of Music will be at 12:15 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20, in the multipurpose room at the Forrest County Center.

“I feel extremely blessed to call PRCC my workplace and my home,” said Dr. Gatlin. “Being named Humanity Teacher of the Year is such an unexpected honor. I feel unworthy and extremely humbled by this award. To me, it is one of the highest awards I can ever receive.”

He holds an associate’s degree from Jones County Junior College, bachelor’s and master’s degrees from William Carey University and the University of Southern Mississippi and the PhD in Music Education from USM.

Gatlin began his professional experience in 1995 as assistant choral director at Petal High School and has served as coral director at West Jones and North Forrest high schools. 

He has taught at both the high school, junior college and university levels and has taught at PRCC as an adjunct instructor since 2005.

“When the possibility to teach here full time in 2012 opened up, I jumped at the opportunity,” said Gatlin. “I love working here. My co-workers and my students make working seem more like spending quality time with family and friends than an actual job.”

Besides his work in education, Gatlin has also served as minister of music, pianist and voice instructor at several area churches.

“Dr. Gatlin is a fantastic instructor who cultivates an appreciation of music into our students, faculty, and staff through his teaching in the classroom as well as an event we host at the college called Making Sprits Bright,” said Dr. Jana Causey, Vice President of Forrest County Operations.

“He is a very talented musician who gives generously of his personal gifts and Pearl River Community College has benefitted tremendously from his membership in our Wildcat family.”

Besides his teaching duties, Gatlin has also performed as a tenor soloist and countertenor soloist USM, William Carey, Bethel University and local churches.

Said Gatlin, “I really could go so far as to say I love the whole community college experience. I am a product of community college education and my experiences at the community college level prepared me for my future educational endeavors. From the moment I decided I wanted to teach, I knew I wanted to teach at a community college; my own experiences reinforcing that feeling.”

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Pearl River Community College offers equal education and employment opportunities.  The College does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, veteran status, or disability.  For inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies or to request accommodations, special assistance, or alternate format publication please contact Tonia M. Seal, Director of Admissions and Records/ ADA/Civil Rights Coordinator at P.O. Box 5559, Poplarville, MS 39470 or 601-403-1060 or Maghan James, Assistant Vice President of Student Services/Title IX Coordinator at P.O. Box 5805, Poplarville, MS 39470 or 601-403-1132.

Each community college president is asked to bring two (2) wrapped door prizes, minimum value of $50 each. We will have a station set up at the conference for you to drop off the door prizes.

Each community college is asked to provide name tags for their Board members, administration, and staff attending the conference.