Kluthe finishes career where it began

Dr. Patricia Kluthe - Director of the Honors Program

Dr. Patricia Kluthe – Director of the Honors Program

Rebecca Watts

At the end of this contract year, Dr.. Patricia Kluthe, director of the honors program, will be leaving Missouri Southern.

“I’ve had a long history with Missouri Southern,” she said. “I have a huge sentimental streak, so leaving is tough for me. I think I’m excited that there will be new leadership in the honors program. New leadership usually means a positive move forward and I’m confident that’s going to happen. So I think it’s easier if I just bundle up my cart and go out the back door.”

Kluthe is a Missouri Southern alumna. She has a master’s degree from the University of Minnesota, and her doctorate from the University of Tulsa. While pursuing her Ph.D., she received an offer to teach for Southern in the spring of 1971.

Kluthe was a part of the task force that designed the honors program in 1989. She was on the committee from the beginning. Kluthe says she has enjoyed every minute.

“I think the program has been a tremendous benefit to the campus,” she said. “I love my job. It’s a constant joy to work with these students, they’re tremendous people. They’re the reason I find fulfillment in my daily activities I always tell the students that they’re golden and it makes me look golden.”

Kluthe currently teaches Theatre Appreciation and History of the Theatre, as well as fulfilling her duties in the honor program and honor classes.

“I love teaching,” she said. “It’s a great job.”

Kluthe’s three children, Jeff, Steven and Beverly, have expressed their support of her plans to her retire. Kluthe said she wants her exit to be a quite one.

“I think that in an organization, especially when we believe we’ve had some personal satisfaction and fulfillment, that it’s very easy for us to fill our egos with the idea that we’re indispensable, I know better,” she said. “This campus will continue to have my loyalty, my respect, my admiration and my support, for all of the days of my life. I love this place, I believe in what it does, I believe in the people, I’m going to miss it.”

With more time for herself, Kluthe said she is looking forward to some independent study, reading and “not playing golf.”

“I really have decided that I’ll find a pet research project,” she said. “There are so many things I could find so much about, but I’ll have something going in terms of research constantly. I have always thought I would write a research article on how honor students think. I certainly have a tremendous database that I could work from.”