celebrate education - brought to you by the amarillo globe-news
Technician turns work into fun
Montana Johnson

Age: 30

Occupation: Computer technician, MoJo's Computer Co.

Where did you receive your education?

Amarillo and Randall high schools; Amarillo College.

How has your education played a role in your life today?

Without it, I would be at some job I hated with people who would eventually make me mad. I have to learn all the time for what I do. Every day is on-the-job training.

What was your greatest educational challenge and how did you overcome it?

Attention-deficit disorder. I read a lot, but in small clips. Otherwise, I have to read, then reread, then reread long paragraphs or books. I don't read fiction, but I do love to learn new things.

What is the value of your education?

Priceless. I can go anywhere, U.S. or abroad, and can easily find work and be a benefit to a community. What others see as work, I see as fun.

What would you say to someone who's undecided about continuing their education?

Don't stop your education. I taught a computer class at Amarillo College for seniors returning to work, and they really struggled. You should try or learn something new on your computer at least once a month. It gives you a month to complete and conquer whatever your goal was, and by the end of it, you're a smarter person.

When did you make education a priority?

I guess my mid-20s. I hated the job I had, and I reached a turning point in my life. I quit my job, started studying, and started trying to make a living working in the computer world. My education has never stopped since.

What made you realize the importance of education in your life?

I figure you work for a third to half of your life; above all, enjoy what you do.

Did you ever think about quitting, What made you keep going?

I had a hard time in the beginning. A lot of personal problems mounted, and I was broke.

I was homeless for awhile, but I was as a kid, too. We lived in the old ''Best'' building parking lot on 45th Avenue and Western Street when I was 9.

I remember we had Christmas in the car that year. I knew I was at rock bottom again in my 20s, but I never stopped. I've gotten to do really cool things, and go places most people don't get to, just because of a passion. I love what I do and I love my life, and thank the Lord for it.

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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