Profile: Jacob McAbee
Jacob McAbee enjoys his work as a Residence Director, and you can see signs of his enthusiasm with just one visit to Hull Hall.
McAbee is working toward a master's degree in counselor education with an emphasis in student affairs so that he can pursue a career with university residence life programs. He said working with student residents is just that rewarding. Growing up in Murray, Kentucky, which is known as "the friendliest small town in America," must have prepared him well for offering a welcoming presence. He said he has an open-door policy to be there for his students.
He did his undergraduate work at Murray State University with a major in television production and a minor in advertising. The avid sports fan initially wanted to work in sports broadcasting, but he found that he also loved serving on his hall council and student government association. He even became president of his fraternity at Murray State, and he said all his student activities helped him become well-rounded and only encouraged him to excel academically.
He still focuses a lot of time enjoying sports and attends all MSU football games, as well as baseball and other sports. Most notably, he not only attends MSU volleyball games, but he is the "voice" of MSU volleyball, calling all home games.
He said Mississippi State was a great choice for graduate studies in student affairs. He brought his love of residence life to work and has since implemented award-winning residence programs at his beloved Hull Hall.
One program he started in Hull Hall is called "Floor Wars," which pits the various levels against one another in a friendly competition to earn points by participating in programs that include anything from alcohol prevention or healthy habits presentations to intramural sports to canned food drives. At the end of the semester, the winning floor receives t-shirts and the pleasure of seeing McAbee do some ridiculous stunt for their entertainment. He said the only exemption is that he will not shave his eyebrows.
"These students have really put in a lot of effort, and I want to reward them for that," he said.
While planning to graduate in May, McAbee now is searching for employment at a college or university in the Southeast. He would like to gain some additional work experience before enrolling in a doctoral program to study either public policy and administration or education. He said he's always had an interest in running for public office, but he also knows that education will be the most important issue facing public servants. His long-term career goal is to become a vice president for student affairs.
While he doesn't know where his path will lead, he said he would love to work at MSU.
"It would be great to come back to Mississippi because I've had a great experience here. From Bully to cowbells to the Maroon and White chants, it's all made me love this campus," McAbee said.Writer: Allison Matthews | Photo: Russ Houston
Next week … Jessica Tegt !