When we say that John Hall is part of the Arkansas State family, it might be an understatement. From daughters pursuing degrees to his father’s role as a key administrator for former President Carl Reng, John is one of the hallowed Halls of A-State.
John D. Hall
Place of birth:
Wife Cathy P. Hall (tenured Associate Professor of Nursing at A-State) and daughters Elizabeth (A-State doctoral student of occupational therapy) and Sarah (A-State psychology major). Over the years, 12 members of my family have earned college degrees from A-State.
Why did you choose A-State?
I earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and a Masters degree in Rehabilitation Counseling here in the early and mid-1980s before earning Masters and Doctoral Degrees in School Psychology at the University of Cincinnati. Also, my late father Ray H. Hall Sr. was a key administrator here for 27 years and helped Dr. Carl R. Reng and others build the university.
Your philosophy on education in seven words:
“Prepare students to better humanity and society.”
What makes a good professor?
First and foremost you have to be a good teacher. You have to know your subject matter, be skilled in your discipline, and have a passion for what you are teaching. A good professor has integrity, plans ahead, is organized, and remains flexible. It helps to have good interpersonal and verbal skills. Engaging in scholarship/research is also important. In fact, the work you do in this area often makes you a better in the classroom. You also have to personally care about students, enjoy working with them, advising them, mentoring them, and watching them grow. One of the greatest rewards is to follow your students after graduation and observe their professional success. A good professor also cares about their department, college, university, and professional discipline and continually strives to make them better. This is often demonstrated through professional service.
What music is playing in your car?
Johnny Cash, “Live at Folsom Prison”
What is your favorite podcast?
Cincinnati Reds Podcast by MLB.com
Who was your favorite teacher (and why)?
As an undergraduate psychology major it would be Dr. D. Lynn Howerton at A-State. He was a master teacher, extremely knowledgeable, with high standards and integrity and he was also an excellent advisor. As a doctoral student at the University of Cincinnati it was Dr. David W. Barnett. Like Dr. Howerton he was extremely knowledgeable with high standards and integrity. Dr. Barnett also assisted me in enhancing my writing and research skills and created opportunities for scholarship and teaching/supervision. He also provided me with the knowledge and skills to become an effective practitioner. Both of these mentors are retired now.
My favorite motion picture is...
“The Right Stuff”
The television series I must TiVo...
What makes for a good student?
A good student attends all classes for the entire period, takes notes, asks appropriate questions and makes relevant comments. They are: prepared, attentive, focused, interested, professional, and respectful. A good student devotes ample time to their studies outside of class. They turn all assignments in on-time and demonstrate quality work. They develop an understanding and appreciation of their profession and the responsibilities and obligations associated with their practices.
What’s the value of a university education?
It is immeasurable. It awards you with great personal satisfaction over a lifetime and provides you with key knowledge and skills and financial security. A university education most importantly allows you to better humanity and society.
My favorite trip was...
a summer two week tour of Colorado with my family.
If I could travel anywhere it would be...
all of the U.S. National Parks.
If you could teach another field, which one and why?
Journalism, investigative journalism would be most interesting. Uncovering and exposing important matters of public interest with the goal of bringing about needed change would be rewarding.
E-book or hardback?
Beach or mountains?
Dinner or supper?
What are you working on right now?
I am designing a study and service learning project involving school psychology graduate students and a colleague in the department to examine the effectiveness of a recently published social skills training program with kindergarten students. I am working with two colleagues in the department and a graduate student on a study examining planned giving for undergraduate student scholarships in collaboration with the Development Office. I am also serving as the Faculty Advisor for the recolonized Beta Psi Chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity.
In college, I was known for...
being a good student in psychology and possessing effective interpersonal skills.
The last book I read for fun was...
“Sparky and Me: My Friendship with Sparkey Anderson and the Lessons he Shared About Baseball and Life” by Dan Ewald.
Four people I’d take to coffee...
Ret. General Chuck Yeager, Johnny Bench, Pete Rose and Dr. Albert Bandura.
The best advice I ever received was...
“Always have a plan B if plan A does not work out.”
What is the one thing I’ve learned I’d tell my college self...
“If you strongly believe in something adhere to the task at hand with fierce conviction.”
My hobby is...
photography, gardening, fishing, hunting, and following Cincinnati Reds baseball.
My passion is...
my family, my dog, and my work.
My pro sports team is...
the Cincinnati Reds.
My pet peeve is...
non-academic use of technology during class, unexcused absences, talking over the professor, and not attending to tasks.
My favorite meal is...
Caesar salad, grilled beef tenderloin, corn-on-the-cob, fried okra, and bottle of fine cabernet sauvignon wine.
A perfect day is...
a big southern breakfast, good coffee, sunshine, light breeze, 75-80 degrees F with low humidity, wade fishing for trout on the upper Spring River near Mammoth Springs, Ark.
My spirit character is...
Ret. Col. Gordon “Gordo” Cooper Jr., NASA Astronaut played by Dennis Quaid in the movie The “Right Stuff”.
What I like about Jonesboro is...
how it has developed in terms of businesses, public services and amenities, restaurants, entertainment, health care services, preK-12 schools, and the university.
When I want to crush karaoke, my song is...
“On The Road Again” by Willie Nelson.
Cats or dogs?
Dogs, no doubt.
The one thing I’d take to a desert island (and a boat is not an answer)...
I wish I could...
travel more, maybe in retirement.
Only my friends know I...
am most passionate not about baseball but about the Cincinnati Reds, the first professional baseball team in America’s first city of baseball.
My favorite saying is...
“You can’t always get what you want, but sometimes you get what you need.” - Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, 1969