Fulfill your dreams, no matter how long it takes!
Mansfield, OH-- From the front of a classroom to the forefront of a scientific breakthrough, Martha Rogers credits her success to the dedication of the staff and faculty at The Ohio State University at Mansfield.
When she first came to the University, Rogers was a young-single mother working three jobs. She looks back at that time, and explains how it felt when she made the decision that changed her life, “I knew about OSU-Mansfield, and I knew I wanted an education. I will never forget the day I sat down in the admissions office thinking, how do I afford this and wondering, could I make it? Am I smart enough?”
But her hard work paid off. Rogers completed a bachelor’s degree in Middle Childhood Education and was hired to teach middle school science in the Ontario School District.
A former student, Sarah Adkins praises Rogers for the lessons she taught her, “She made me have a love for science and what the human body can do. I still remember in 5th grade when she brought a cow tongue and esophagus to class. I am now a medical assistant and still love learning about the body and science.” Even while Rogers was molding the futures of so many young students, she never forgot her dream of becoming a scientist.
She took a position as a teacher at sea, studying the Hawaiian Monk Seal for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It took her from being a junior high science teacher and put her on remote islands working with scientists. “I knew the dream that I had as a child, to become a scientist, had never left.”
When she returned from Hawaii, she was almost 40-years-old, and she knew it was time to pursue her dream of becoming a scientist. Rogers says, “I will never go to my death bed saying I wish I could have. So I did it. I came back to OSU-Mansfield.”
Rodgers completed a second bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering, and was offered a position at a company in Columbus. They needed somebody who understood microbiology and chemical engineering. During her time at OSU-Mansfield, she had a chance to work with several professors in both fields. “I become the key person to get engineers to understand microbiology and the microbiologists to understand engineering. I was also a former teacher, and I was good at it,” Rogers says with a smile. “The contributions I have made for my company have opened up the world to me.”
Rogers is currently a training programs manager at Pocared Diagnostics, Inc. The company was able to market the first comprehensive, culture-free microbiology solution by using specimen samples to detect, identify, and enumerate microorganisms quickly. Rogers explains, “It’s possible to identify and quantify an organism in minutes, instead of hours or days. We realized the potential for saving lives!”
Cynthia Callahan, Coordinator and Associate English Professor at Ohio State Mansfield, as well as a close friend of Rogers, says, “Martha lives the story of many of our students; she came back to school because she had a dream and persevered until she achieved it. Now she travels the world doing work that saves lives.”
Rogers firmly believes it was OSU-Mansfield that opened the door for her to do something worthwhile with her life.
“I have had the opportunity to revolutionize the field of microbiology. I have been able to work with physicists from Israel, the United States, and Denmark to do microbiology in minutes. This is what OSU-Mansfield did for me. It opened the door. Thank you OSU-Mansfield!”