SUU to Everywhere

KayLynne Matheson (’85)

KayLynne Matheson (’85)
SUU to Global Educator

Originally published on December 28, 2021.

KayLynne Matheson hails from a Cedar City family, but as the daughter of a career Air Force officer, experienced a lot of the country. In fact, following her graduation from a Delaware high school, she prepared to enroll at Auburn University in Alabama, near where her father had been newly posted. But, she otherwise chose to move to Cedar City to live with her grandparents and attend SUU, which she calls a “family legacy.”

“My grandmother attended the Branch Agricultural School,” she says, “My grandfather also taught there. Both of my parents, three siblings, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, and multiple cousins also attended SUU.”

Her father Col. (Ret.) Leon Matheson and his recently passed wife Barbara have been longtime supporters of the University.

KayLynne’s decision was one she would never regret, as she plunged into the teacher education program and became well trained.

“There was never any other career for me,” she says. “I was born a teacher and will always be one. My younger siblings, along with every stuffed animal or doll in the house, became my first students. I taught in a one-room schoolhouse that my father created from a large wooden shipping container. Hundreds of students later, I am still teaching and I love it.”

She’s been a teaching nomad of sorts, preparing students in such far-flung locales as Utah, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Russia, Poland, India, The Netherlands, Paraguay, and Qatar, and has taught a variety of grades made up of a dizzying mix of nationalities, in schools of all sizes.

“SUU gave me the foundation and the skills that I needed to go out into the world of education with confidence…it wasn’t until I had my own classroom and began mentoring student teachers from other educational institutions that I realized how well I prepared I had been…I entered my profession with a solid foundation,” she says.