(HARLINGEN, Texas) – Jean Lashbrook was 19 when she knew she wanted to change lives serving in the medical field. Her journey as an emergency medical technician and a registered nurse led her to her current role: an associate provost at Texas State Technical College.
“I was recruited by a friend who was working at TSTC at the time,” she recalled. “There was an opening for a registered nurse in the Nursing program, and she kept pushing me to apply. I was content in my position at a public health agency. But after several nudges from her, I applied, was hired, and never looked back. It was one of the best decisions I have made in my life.”
Before becoming associate provost, Lashbrook served as TSTC’s Allied Health division director and prior to that as Nursing Division director, which enabled her to meet TSTC colleagues across the state.
“I have learned so much,” she said. “I am still learning and growing, thanks to TSTC.”
This August, Lashbrook will celebrate 24 years of leaving an impact at TSTC — years in which she has influenced the lives of students, and vice versa.
“One of my best memories is of a student who was being pulled in many different directions by his family,” she said. “They did not think that college was necessary. A couple years after he completed school, he came back in his Border Patrol uniform to show me he went the right way with his education. I was extremely proud of him. I still am.”
Lashbrook’s wisdom in the field of health care has not only helped patients she has met in her career, but also benefited students she has met in the classroom.
“The most enjoyable times I had in the classroom were when I was able to see the light come on when students had an excitement to learn about health care,” she said. “When I worked with dual enrollment students, it was so amazing to see the maturity level from day one up until they completed the program. Watching a 17-year-old student find their passion for what they want to do in life is the best.”
Her guidance did not leave students once they exited the classroom.
“I have watched many of them take care of patients in nursing homes with such care,” she said. “I could tell it was the best life choice for them to pursue.”
With many students starting college at TSTC this fall, she offered her advice for success.
“TSTC is the best-kept secret in the Valley,” she said. “I have worked many years with amazing colleagues who give everything possible to their students. At TSTC, you are not just a number — you are TSTC family. I have always been extremely proud to recruit, teach, mentor and represent this college. I started my education at TSTC and finished my prerequisites here for my degree in nursing. I am TSTC.”
Fall registration is currently underway. To become part of the TSTC family, visit tstc.edu.