Tell us a little bit about what you’re doing now. Where you live, etc.
I am working at UW-Platteville as an Educational Technology Manager in the division that houses the Distance Learning Center, Continuing Education, and the School of Graduate studies. I have been employed here almost five years, relocating to Platteville to be with my now husband TKE Pete “Rocky” Hewitt. It’s been a whirlwind since as we purchased our first home, we got married, we had our daughter Gabrielle, I earned my PhD and PMP, and Pete’s moved back into Radio. I’ve been a primary caregiver for my Dad who had a heart transplant just this past December and without Pete as my rock I’m not sure what I would have done.
Julie (Kimbler) Hewitt with her husband Pete "Rocky" Hewitt and their daughter Gabrielle, 2016.
Working on campus has to be interesting, what is the biggest thing that's changed since your days as an undergrad in Platteville?
Wow-- so many changes with the growth in the number of students, new dorms and eating places, and what seems like a better support system for students who might be struggling. Some of what I see now behind the scenes may have been there and were just not as visible to me at that time. I'm glad to see they have come a long way in putting services in place or better advertising them for students. I worked in continuing ed for a couple years and it is amazing to see how much that group has grown. I also worked at Steve's Pizza and then O'Neills when the bar opened, I'm still in awe when I visit Steve's new location and how it's thriving now. So yes, lots of changes. 🙂
What did you do right after you left UWP? (work, military, travel?)
I actually ended up with my Associate’s degree from Platteville after deciding Electrical Engineering was interesting, however, not what I wanted my career to be in. I wrapped up dual bachelors’ degrees in Computer Information Systems and Business Administration from another institution a year later. As irony would have it while wrapping up those degrees, I went to work for Hamilton Sundstrand Aerospace in an Engineering Department for almost five years. Even though I had left Platteville, I got to spend some time with other TKE Alumni Nate “Trickle” Anderson and Carlos “Perro” Crespo who were working in Freeport. After 9-11 and changes in the aerospace field, I moved into K12 education and then eventually higher education. It’s been an interesting professional and educational journey for sure.
What prompted the change from Aerospace Engineering to Education? That's quite a shift!
I've also loved education since I was a kid-- always playing school and was a teacher's aide. I continued my passion for teaching and learning through being volleyball coaching. After 9-11 I survived three layoffs at the aerospace company and wasn't going to be missed on the 4th round. It was time to make a decision. I took a leap of faith and moved into K12 education first becoming a certified secondary education teacher in Math, Physics, Computer, Business, Marketing, and Management. 🙂 My family and many close friends said 'about time'... they knew I always loved education. 😉
What do you remember most vividly about your time as a TKE?
My most vivid memories are about the friendships developed and all the wonderful times we had together. While our lives have gone in many directions, I am comforted to know when we do get together it is as comfortable as it was then. Being back on campus and walking by the TKE house now and again, it’s amazing how the feelings and memories flood back. Whenever I see the letters around across campus, it brings a smile to my face and brightens my day. The memories are many… whether they be from rush events, the first day of 70 degree weather (which is finally here), halloween celebrations, homecoming, banquet, grilling out, or our many other times together – there is a fondness and feeling of belonging. One of my memories that I find comical now is that Pete was the first to buy me an ‘adult beverage’. Funny where life takes us!
Julie (Kimbler) Hewitt and her husband Pete "Rocky" Hewitt visiting Hogwarts at Universal Studio, 2013.
What was your best day in TKE?
I find it too difficult to choose a ‘best day’. I feel there were so many days that TKE was just what I needed. Tough day of classes or if I was wanting to celebrate—there was always someone there. As others have mentioned in some of our FB discussions, it really is the cumulative effective and all that it continues to be. I will be forever thankful for my decision to become a little sister and all the wonderful men and women I met as a result of that choice. (And of course, especially meeting Pete "Rocky" Hewitt!) 😉
Julie (Kimbler) Hewitt and her husband Pete "Rocky" Hewitt on their wedding day, 2013.
- Book or Movie? Book
- Poolside or Beachside? Beachside
- Netflix or Hulu? Whatever Pete picks! 😉
- Fall or Spring? Definitely Fall
- Blue Sky or Starry Night? Starry Night
- East Coast or West Coast? West Coast