celebrate education - brought to you by the amarillo globe-news

College trained spokesman to think

Wes Reeves
Age: 40
Occupation: Media relations representative, Xcel Energy

Where did you receive your education?
The University of Texas.

What is the value of your education?
I couldn't have qualified for my current job without a college degree. And without the college experience, it would have been harder to adjust in a work environment where employees have a wide range of cultural experiences. College trains you to understand other people, investigate their beliefs and opinions, and, if it feels right, adopt new ways of thinking.

What would you say to someone who's undecided about continuing their education?
Keep going even if it's not clear where it will take you. Knowledge is an organic thing. Something good will sprout from it.

When did you make education a priority?
When you're blessed to be born into a family that values education, and then doubly blessed to be raised in a place such as Wellington where just about everyone's watching out for you, these priorities are set for you. I never had to think about it.

What made you realize the importance of education in your life?
I realize its importance every time I have to do something that scares me. For example, my high school speech teacher, Mrs. McAlister, signed me up for informative speaking competitions, and I was too chicken to tell her no. I now make my living through informative speaking, and every time I talk to a reporter or address a civic group, I see Mrs. McAlister taking notes (and yes, I'm still speaking too fast).

Did you ever think about quitting? What made you keep going?
During the spring semester of my sophomore year in college I had the urge to run off and live as a hermit in the desert. I didn't quit because I didn't want to let anyone down. Too many people had sacrificed too much for me to throw it away.

2009 Stories
2008 Archive
calendar of events
  • January 11
    Kickoff of 2009 Program
    Find out what Celebrate Education is all about in this special section in your Sunday paper.
  • March 7
    Regional Spelling Bee, West Texas A&M University
    The annual Regional Spelling Bee will feature the top spellers from the Amarillo area. The top five winners will receive scholarship money ranging from $500 to $5,000 and the winner will travel to Washington, D.C., in June to represent the area in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
  • Spring and Fall
    Amarillo Reads community-wide reading projects.
    Dates and details TBA
  • April
    Amarillo Education Matching Grants Program. Exact date TBA
  • April 10
    What's a Kid to Do Special Section
  • April 12
    What's a Kid to Do at the Amarillo Civic Center
    This event will focus on activities and camps for children to participate in during the summer..
  • May 8-29
    Beating the Odds
    A series of stories published daily in the Amarillo Globe-News during the graduation season that profiles people who have inspiring stories to tell about the degree they are about to receive.
  • May 12
    Ready for the Real World program at Amarillo Civic Center
    AISD juniors get training on what's going to face them in a little more than a year.
  • May 16
    Best and Brightest Special Section
  • May 16
    Best and Brightest Event at West Texas A&M University
  • Fall
    Discover College Day
    Fifth graders from area schools visit college campuses.
  • October 1
    Great Jobs Special Section
    Focusing on well paying jobs available in the area that people may not know about.
  • November 2
    Career Education Special Section
    Focusing on businesses and others in the community helping young people gain a career vision.
  • November
    Yes You Can Event
    Designed to help people gain information about the next level of education from GED to PhD. Date TBA.
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