By Hope Salmond, Walker Valley Freshman
Dana McClanahan is a 60 year old Walker Valley High School counselor. She was born and raised in Cleveland, TN. She has worked at Walker Valley since the year before it opened. She worked with Danny Coggin, the former principal of Walker Valley, at the Central Office and helped open the school. Before that, she worked at Bradley Jr. High School for 21 years.
Overall Miss McClanahan, also known as Miss Mac, has worked in education for 38 years, but she has not always been a counselor. She went to college at UTK to be a social studies teacher.
During her senior year in college she became involved in counseling. She was a teacher and a counselor for 8 years but when a full time job in counseling opened up, she jumped at the offer. Although she enjoys her job she sometimes misses being in the classroom.
During her free time Miss Mac enjoys reading books and watching movies. Her favorite novel is Once an Eagle, which is a 1969 war novel by Anthony Myrer.
Miss Mac states that the most difficult thing about her job is time management. She has a lot of things to do and only a little bit of time to do them. Since she has so much work to do, she feels like she does not have as much time as she would like for students.
She loves Walker Valley and some of her favorite things about it are the students, the faculty, and the school’s positive culture. She stated that every school has its problems, but she is gratified to see that Walker Valley’s culture is positive.
She thinks that testing is an issue in public education today. Miss McClanahan thinks that there are too many tests. “It takes the creativity out of the teachers’ hands,” she notes.
Miss McClanahan is an original staff member and is well-respected among her peers. Miss Mac is dedicated to her profession and helping further the school.