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Interview with Isabell Foushee, April 19, 2006 | UNCW Archives and Special Collections Online Database

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Interview with Isabell Foushee, April 19, 2006
April 19, 2006
Isabell Foushee, assistant professor emerita of English, attended Wilmington College and East Carolina University, where she completed a double major in English and Library Science. She began teaching at UNCW in 1964. In this interview, Foushee discusses the growth of the English Department as well as the university, her work in administration and accreditation, and her interactions with such notable figures as Dr. Randall and Dr. Wagoner.
Phys. Desc:

Interviewee: Foushee, Isabell Interviewer: Riggins, Adina / Cody, Sue Date of Interview: 4/19/2006 Series: Voices of UNCW Length: 57 minutes

Riggins: This is Adina Riggins. I'm the University Archivist at UNCW. We're here today for an oral history interview. I'm going to be interviewing, along with Sue Cody, who will also be participating in the interview. We have a very special interviewee here. Please state your name for the tape.

Isabell Foushee: I'm Isabell Foushee, and I am retired faculty.

Riggins: Thank you. And how do you spell your last name?

Isabell Foushee: F-o-u-s-h-e-e.

Riggins: Thanks. And that's "Isabell" with two "l's"?

Isabell Foushee: Correct. [laughs]

Riggins: And one "e", right?

Isabell Foushee: And-- no. No "e"

Riggins: No "e"?

Isabell Foushee: Just two "l's."

Riggins: Oh, yeah. It's I-s-a ..

Isabell Foushee: Is-a-bell.

Riggins: .. b-e-l-l.

Isabell Foushee: Correct. [laughs]

Riggins: Yeah. Great. Thank you. Um.. you have a- a long of-- as faculty member at UNCW. Um.. but before we get into your time as a faculty member, please tell us a little bit about you. Where you're-- where were you born, and where did you grow up?

Isabell Foushee: I grew up here. I was born in Wilmington. I grew up at the beach, and um.. as soon as I finished high school I married, and after three boys were born, ..

Riggins: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: .. I went back to college. Uh.. and finished uh.. at East-- I finished first at Wilmington College.

Riggins: Really?

Isabell Foushee: And then at East Carolina, and uh.. came back here for the first year that we had a four-year class, in 1964.

Riggins: Mmm-hmm. OK. That's when you began.

Isabell Foushee: I started teaching the first-- yes. We graduated our first senior class in the spring of '65.

Riggins: Right.

Cody: Oh! What year did you graduate from Wilmington College?

Isabell Foushee: '62.

Cody: Uh-huh. Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: Finished at-- here in '62 and went immediately to Greenville and finished up there in '60-- summer of '64 and uh.. Dr. Randall had already offered me a position uh.. s-- beginning in the fall, and so I came.

Cody: So, how did you meet Dr. Randall?

Isabell Foushee: Well, I knew him when I was a student.

Cody: Right. That sounds-- yes. Did you have classes with him?

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. no. I had the class with his um.. sis-- no, it's his-- it was his wife's sister.

Cody: Mmm.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. Mildred Johnson.

Cody: Ma-- uh.. yeah! Mildred Johnson.

Isabell Foushee: Mildred Johnson.

Cody: Taught history.

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: Yes. Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: And she was a character.

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: How's that?

Isabell Foushee: She was great!

Riggins: Yeah?

Isabell Foushee: And she made history so much, but she did talk a lot about Dr. Randall.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. What'd she say? [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: She filled us in on everything from the day he was born, I think.

Cody: Well, what do you remember 'bout that? [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Well, he was such an amazing man. He had- um.. he had-- when he was in Chicago-- uh.. University of Chicago as a librarian, and he went and set up the library at the Vatican.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: And um.. the first non-Catholic to do so.

Cody: Uh-huh. Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: And uh.. she told us all about his exploits during World War II when he was uh- uh.. in So-- in Africa uh.. pretending to be uh.. one of the Natzi-- of the-- uh.. pretending not to understand German and he was supposedly an Arab uh.. worker in the German uh..

Cody: The German camp. Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: .. office. Right.

Cody: I've heard that one, too.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Cody: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: And they would test him to see if he understood what was going on in-- 'course he had to be stone-faced and pretend that he did not ..

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: .. understand. But he was-- he spoke twenty-some languages.

Riggins: How could he learn all those languages?

Isabell Foushee: I can't imagine.

Cody: I don't understand how he-- and, of course, Arabic was one of his specialties.

Isabell Foushee: Right.

Cody: And I don't know how he became interested in Arabic.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. I'm not sure. I don't know.

Cody: I mean, University of Michigan, y'know ..

Isabell Foushee: Perhaps because of his work at-- through-- in the library. I'm not sure.

Cody: Might be. Yeah. Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: But he was some amazing person.

Riggins: He- he could pass for someone who was uh..

Isabell Foushee: Yes. Yes.

Cody: Kinda olive-skinned.

Isabell Foushee: Right.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. he was not a real tall man. Uh.. he was-- I don't know how tall he was. Perhaps five-nine or –ten.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: But a lit-- kind of chunky. Kind of ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm. Stocky.

Isabell Foushee: And um.. stocky build. And he-- I could see how he could easily pass for Arabic.

Riggins: They- they would test him 'cause they- they ..

Cody: Right.

Riggins: .. had to test anybody that ..

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Riggins: .. and he, I guess, was not found out.

Cody: [laughs] No!

Isabell Foushee: He would have been in big trouble if they had found out.

Cody: Oh, yeah!

Isabell Foushee: And then- then he'd slip back across the lines at night and carry the messages back to- to the U-- Allied troops.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Well, you look at these pictures now and, y'know, especially some of his younger and not so familiar with that generation, and I just see-- think he looks like he was "old school." There's something serious, no nonsense..

Isabell Foushee: Well, he really was. Uh.. I mean, I-- when I was in his presence, I felt like..

Cody: [laughs] Watch what you say!

Isabell Foushee: .. I was just so insignificant. [laughs] And I needed to listen ..

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: .. and just hang onto every word.

Cody: Uh-huh. Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: I guess when I was a student uh.. and I started down at..

Cody: Bear.

Isabell Foushee: .. Isaac Bear on Market Street, I think that I was so intimida-- for them-- for first thing, I had been out of high school for twelve years when I came back.

Riggins: Mmm-hmm. Right. 'Cause you had a family.

Isabell Foushee: And started back.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And um.. it was kind of like, the principal's coming. [all laugh]

Cody: That's right.

Isabell Foushee: And- uh.. and you have to be on your P's and Q's.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: So uh.. I guess that did carry over to my employment, too. For a while anyway. But he was always just very gracious, very open and um.. he did not talk a lot, but when he did, you better listen!

Cody: Right. [all laugh]

Riggins: He didn't wa- waste his words and ..

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Riggins: Well, y'know, I remember now looking at your biography, when you graduated high school, that was right around when Wilmington College was opening.

Isabell Foushee: Right. Yes.

Riggins: So you probably had classmates who came here.

Isabell Foushee: Well, some of the teachers that were teaching in the high school were also first teachers over at the- ..

Cody: At Wilmington College.

Isabell Foushee: .. at the Wilmington College.

Riggins: Was there a lot of buzz about "Oh, it's a good thing, there's finally a college, and finally courses for .. "

Isabell Foushee: I don't know. I was just so glad to get out of high school. I thought if anybody ever even mentioned going back to school to me, I would just shoot 'em. [laughs]

Riggins: Really? Just all that work, tests?

Isabell Foushee: But then, you know, af-- I- I thought high school was kind of boring. And um.. I just didn't want to. I didn't think that I could go on to college because my brother was in college, my sister was in college, and I knew there wasn't enough money for me to go to college.

Cody: Right. Mmm-hmm. Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: But then twelve years later it happened.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. You were ready.

Isabell Foushee: And I was glad. And I enjoyed it.

Cody: And you did English?

Isabell Foushee: I did, and just thoroughly enjoyed it. I- I made-- I did a double major in Library Science.

Cody: Oh, did you? I didn't know that.

Isabell Foushee: And then English.

Riggins: At East Carolina?

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Great.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Cody: And then Dr. Randall had already had sort of tapped you to become-- to come back on the faculty.

Isabell Foushee: He had.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. and I had completed all of my Master's work, except my thesis. When I came back, I had not completed the thesis, and so I was teaching and ..

Cody: Trying to do that.

Isabell Foushee: .. trying.

Cody: And trying to raise three boys. [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And three boys, right.

Cody: Man! [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Riggins: Yeah, but it-- but you finished, I'm sure.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes. I did. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Eventually, I did.

Riggins: Your Master's ..

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: What was your Master's topic on? Do you remember?

Isabell Foushee: Um.. oh, well, I'll never forget that. It was on .. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: I did uh.. an original s-- vocabulary study in this area, in the uh.. Wilmington, New Hanover County, Brunswick area, and it was-- um.. and um.. I had the-- I- I sent out the questionnaires. Uh- uh.. I chose older families.

Riggins: Really?

Isabell Foushee: Who had- y'know, had been here for a long time, for the most part, and um.. it was uh.. modeled after the New England Linguistics Atlas.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And ..

Riggins: Oh, yeah. I remember that. Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Riggins: That's a good reference book.

Cody: I'm sure that Dr. Randall then, y'know, especially since linguistics was such an interest of his ..

Isabell Foushee: He was always involved in linguis- ..

Cody: He was glad to see you come back.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. the-- um.. my thesis director had been one of the original uh.. researchers on the Linguistic Atlas ..

Cody: Oh.

Isabell Foushee: .. New England.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: And I had ..

Cody: We need a copy of that for the collection! [laughs]

Riggins: Yeah, definitely!

Isabell Foushee: I had to do it just like they did. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Thirty years before.

Cody: They had standards. [laughs]

Riggins: Right. Do no deviate. [all laugh]

Riggins: That was a really interesting book.

Cody: Yeah.

Riggins: So- so, it was on regional dialect and ..

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: Great.

Riggins: You made some conclusions about this area, I'm sure. Or just ..

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. we are a hodge-podge. [all laugh]

Riggins: Interesting.

Isabell Foushee: It's-- it is-- yes, it's real interesting then that we- we have two or three different speech-- speeches and ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. dialects here. But we have the ones that came down from the Outer Banks.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: We have the ones that came, move up here from Charleston.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And then the ones that came down the Cape Fear River from the Piedmont area.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: So, we really have um..

Cody: A blend.

Isabell Foushee: .. three speech patterns.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Basically.

Cody: Uh-huh. Interesting. Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Back in 1960-- uh.. '64 to this-- the new campus.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Riggins: Y'know, the- its own campus.

Isabell Foushee: Right. Yes, we- we were uh.. four buildings then, I think. Or three. Hanover Hall. When was Hanover Hall ..

Riggins: That was one of the original.

Isabell Foushee: .. completed? That was ..

Cody: No. Well, the- the three uh.. Alderman, James, and Hoggard were the first.

Isabell Foushee: Right. They were the first three, and it seems to me that Hanover Hall was the first gym.

Cody: Yes, definitely.

Isabell Foushee: And it was- it- it was probably completed by the time I got there.

Cody: Right about that time. Hmm-mmm. Hmm-mmm.

Riggins: Well, uh.. we- we already touched on what brought you to UNCW. You were ready to come home.

Isabell Foushee: Right.

Riggins: You had family here and you're glad for the opportunity to teach here. Um.. at the university there were several buildings. Where were- where were you located?

Isabell Foushee: My first uh.. office was in Hoggard, the English Department was on the second floor of Hoggard, and there were four or five, sometimes there were five [laughs] in one- in one classroom that had been made into a faculty bullpen.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Riggins: Right. I heard about that.

Isabell Foushee: And it was very difficult to talk with a student.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: Because you had all these other faculty members trying to talk with their students, too. Sometimes, we just ended up going out in hall to- to talk to students. Um.. we had uh.. the-- after we were over there, then we moved into the Administration Building, and the English Department was up on the second floor there. And two of us shared a little broom closet. [all laugh]

Cody: So who was your- who was your closet mate?

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. Becky Haywood.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: She was only here for a couple of years.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. but, when Becky wanted to talk with her-- one of her students, I left.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: I had to, or else get stepped on.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And when- when I talked to a student, Becky would leave.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: But, um.. we did not have enough faculty members then to take care of the students uh.. and we ended up oh, sometimes with forty-five or more students in a class.

Cody: Wow. Yeah.

Riggins: You kind of joke about it now, but back then ..

Isabell Foushee: Oh, it was not fun. [laughs]

Cody: No. Yeah.

Riggins: .. I'm sure it was not funny. I'm sure you'd probably ..

Isabell Foushee: Especially when you had ..

Cody: All those ..

Isabell Foushee: .. that many student writing papers every week.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Compositions to grade and ..

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Riggins: Who did you take-- who did you discuss this wi-- was there a department chair or ..?

Isabell Foushee: Dr. Joanne Corbett was the chairman.

Riggins: Yes. I talked to her.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. she had been-- uh.. she became chairman when um.. Miss Morton, Shannon Morton became the dean of ..

Cody: Women.

Isabell Foushee: .. women.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. Joanne took over as chairman.

Riggins: Really?

Cody: Miss Morton just died what, about two years ago?

Riggins: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: Yes. Yes. She was a hundred and two or three.

Cody: Wow.

Isabell Foushee: But at least we have a Morton Hall named for her.

Cody: That's right. That's ..

Isabell Foushee: She was-- uh.. she was a grand lady. She really was.

Riggins: What was she like?

Isabell Foushee: She was just very "old school."

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And the skirts had gotten shorter right at that time.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And we had a couple of young faculty members just out of college and-- Becky being one of them, and she liked to wear to her dresses above her knee.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: And Miss Morton, as dean of women-- and that was students and faculty [laughs].

Cody: Uh-huh. Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: She called her in and told her she had to start wearing her dresses a little longer than that.

Riggins: Oh, my goodness.

Isabell Foushee: That was not appropriate for her to ..

Cody: Oooh! [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: But she was a-- she was just a very, very fine lady.

Riggins: No doubt, and I'm sure Becky was not very amused by that.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: She wasn't very amused. She was a good-time party girl.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And she didn't think too much of having to make her ..

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: .. her skirts longer.

Cody: Change her fashion.

Riggins: But that-- those were the times.

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Riggins: She went along with it ..

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: .. or- or not. Um.. well, as- as you worked in the English Department, who were some of the people there who- who you grew to admire? Their leadership style, their- their way with students. Who did you-- either in the English Department or outside of it.

Isabell Foushee: Well, there were so few of us then.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. Joanne Corbett was the chairperson and uh.. the-- Betsy Pearsall.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Jerry Rosselot.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. Tom McCall. Um.. Becky and Nancy uh.. were only there a couple of years and then they were gone. Um.. who else did we have? Carol Ellis came in '66 I think, or '67.

Cody: How about Jim Collier? When did he come?

Isabell Foushee: Jim Collier was later.

Cody: Mmm. OK.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. I think that's it.

Cody: Might have been about it. Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Riggins: Small department.

Isabell Foushee: It was a very small department. And we'd have a few part-timers that would come in, take one or two classes.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Well, English being such a core subject-- everyone had to take English..

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Riggins: I'm sure you were busy with teaching.

Isabell Foushee: We were very busy. [laughs]

Riggins: How many classes did you teach?

Isabell Foushee: Well, to begin with, we were on quarter sytem, and so we taught every day. Um.. and we had uh.. four or five classes. When we had to double up and take forty-five or so students in- in a class, we would-- and that- that was partly because we didn't have enough space.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And so, when we did that, then we dropped to-- down to about three.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Still, that was a big ..

Riggins: That was still ..

Isabell Foushee: That was a good size load.

Cody: Oh, my.

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Riggins: And that was the same number of students. Right.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Riggins: So- so large. Um.. uh.. what about Dr. Randall? Did he make any-- make his rounds to the English Department? Did you..?

Isabell Foushee: Seldom. [laughs] Um.. we had uh.. beginning, I think, that year-- the same year that I started uh.. teaching, we had a new dean of faculty, Dr. Reynolds, and uh.. he was- uh.. he was an interesting person, too..

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Um.. he could be extremely nice, but he could be extremely otherwise, sometimes. [laughs]

Cody: Did they have a "good cop / bad cop" thing going sometimes? [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: But he was- he was more involved with the faculty..

Cody: Uh-huh. That was his role.

Isabell Foushee: .. than was Dr. Randall, at that time.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. Dr. Reynolds was another-- was he in- in the military, as well? Or am I thinking about Dr. Price maybe? Or Jim Price?

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. no. He had been-- Dr.-- yeah, Jim Price had been in the military. Uh.. Dr. Reynolds came here from um.. University of Florida.

Cody: Uh-huh. OK.

Isabell Foushee: And he had been my thesis director at East Carolina.

Cody: Oh, really?

Isabell Foushee: Had been at the University of Florida. He says, "Oh, yes! I know her. She's a pistol!"

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: I said, "Tell me about it!" [all laugh]

Cody: I've heard things about the coffee breaks and- and people would try to go when Dr. Randall was there.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes. Oh, yes. Um.. one room was set aside as a faculty lounge in the Administration Building, and we would have coffee and sometimes doughnuts or some-something for mid-morning break, and if you were not in class, you tried to make the- the social call.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: But Dr. Randall had his own particular chair, and nobody sat in Dr. Randall's chair.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And if a new faculty member or someone that thought they could get by with it..

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: .. accidentally got in the chair, he would come in and stand over them and wait for them to get up.

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: And he wouldn't smile. It wasn't a joke.

Isabell Foushee: He would-- no. That was his chair.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: And it was right beside the coffee pot. Now, he was nice.

Riggins: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: But he was stern.

Cody: Uh-huh. Right. Yeah. Nice as long as you stayed within the boundaries of the rules. [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Cody: But then, his conversations-- what kind of the things would he talk about there? Uh..

Isabell Foushee: Y'know, I never had a ti-- had time to stay in there very much.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And uh.. I always felt that he'd rather talk to the men than to the women.

Cody: Right.

Riggins: You just got that- that he felt more comfortable?

Isabell Foushee: Yes. I guess because of his military background.

Cody: He-- yeah.

Isabell Foushee: But, I think that uh.. he felt maybe more comfortable with the men and then I- I just-- I never hung around and talked to him very much.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: He was-- when-- back in those days, we would have a faculty Christmas party, and he would always have a Christmas party. All the faculty members and their spouses were invited, and he had the- the party at his house and he lived over on Mockingbird Lane.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: And he-- when uh.. you got to the door, he was at the door and he'd say, "How're you tonight?" And he'd shake ya in.

Cody: He'd pull you in.

Isabell Foushee: He'd shake you right through the door.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And then when you were getting ready to leave, he would, "Nice for-- to see you." And he'd shake you right out, just as fast as he shook you in. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: But it was always a real pleasant uh.. experience.

Cody: And that was when he had his second wife, Mott?

Isabell Foushee: Yes. Yes.

Cody: Did you ever know his first wife, Mildred?

Isabell Foushee: No. Uh-uh.

Cody: Yeah. She died just a couple of years after they arrived.

Isabell Foushee: Right.

Cody: Because of the ..

Isabell Foushee: In the accident.

Cody: Injuries from the accident. Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: Right.

Cody: What about Mott, though? What was she like? Was she like Mildred? Um.. I mean, not-- Mildred Johnson, her sister, or .. ?

Isabell Foushee: Um.. she was a lot prettier.

Cody: Was she? [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Um.. Mildred Johnson was not a beauty, but she was uh.. just uh.. a wonderful character.

Cody: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: She, in fact, had been one of my high school teachers.

Cody: Ah!

Isabell Foushee: And then when I finally got back into school again, she was my-- one of the history teachers there.

Cody: Good. Yeah. It helped you adjust to getting back in school, right? [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Um.. she was very nice.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: She was-- she took the secondary role though to, I think, to- to Dr. Randall.

Cody: Uh-huh. Right. She knew that. Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Behind the scenes.

Isabell Foushee: She was the force behind the force.

Cody: [laughs] Great.

Riggins: One thing that strikes me as I've done these interviews about Wilmington College, is that so many of the faculty who ended up staying a long time were from the South. I can't think of very many um.. early ones who weren't, except there were some who were from the Midwest, like Dr. Randall. I mean, he- he had been in Georgia, but he was uh.. not a Southerner. So I mean, do you think that, I don't know, there's anything to this? Did you-- did it feel like a real Southern place. Like, if you weren't Southern, that you may not have fit in, but maybe if you were Midwest, that kind of was close enough?

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: Y'know?

Isabell Foushee: Well, Dr. Ran-- this was not-- you mean-- you're talking about William Randall?

Riggins: Right. Right. Yeah, he ..

Isabell Foushee: Yeah. 'Cause you didn't- you didn't interview Duncan, did you?

Cody: No. I'm afraid we didn't get started in time.

Isabell Foushee: Well, this was not his destination. He had car trouble. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: And- and that's how he ended up-- um.. but, you have to remember that this was—we-- when we first started out, it was as a consequence of a tax special uh.. lev-- specially levied on New Hanover County, to begin the school.

Riggins: Right.

Isabell Foushee: And- um.. and it was basically for the returning veterans, and so um.. it was just kind of natural that they'd go over to the high school and pull in some qualified teachers to- to help start it.

Riggins: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And as far as the recruitment um.. I don't know whether they- they-- y'know, it's difficult, I think, to bring uh.. people in from a- a long distance for a junior college.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Back then ..

Isabell Foushee: And we were- we were bringing-- y'know, we were a junior college. A good one.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: But, we were still a junior college.

Cody: I mean, just the travel costs alone ..

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: .. would have broken the budget for anybody to go to conferences.

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Cody: Yeah. Yeah. Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And so, yes, as far as it being a Southern school, it- it's a very- very much a local school.

Cody: Yeah.

Riggins: Times sure have changed.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Well, y'know, Dorothy Marshall, Mary Bellamy, um..

Riggins: Locals.

Isabell Foushee: They are lo-- yeah. They are local. Uh.. so many of the early ones were from somewhere in North Carolina.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Right.

Cody: Calvin Dawes.

Isabell Foushee: Calvin and Bill Brooks and ..

Cody: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: Um..

Cody: Jerry Shinn even. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Yeah, Jerry Shinn, and uh.. well, Jerry Rosselot, OK, from Ohio.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: So we did bring a little bit.

Riggins: Yes.

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: I mean, it's the Midwest again.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Cody: Yeah.

Riggins: There's just-- seems to be a number of connections, y'know.

Cody: Well, one thing, too, is-- I mean, I'm from the Midwest, but my ancestors are from North Carolina. So..

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm. So there's ..

Cody: .. y'know, there- there's a lot of Southernness about Indiana, at least.

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Cody: Because a lot of those folks were from the South originally.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Riggins: It's true. I- I don't know-- you probably did have-- I've heard some stories about some Northerners who came down for maybe a quarter or a semester and then kind of left quickly. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: I- I don't know why. [all laugh]

Riggins: Y'know- y'know, the times were different down here. It was kind of a bit isolated. Wilmington was isolated in a lot of ways.

Isabell Foushee: Well, it just about had to be your destination because it was, y'know, basically a dead end. Um.. if you wanted to go to uh.. points south, then you didn't come on 421 into Wilmington, you'd bypass Wilmington and go on 17.

Riggins: Right. Right. That was the thoroughfare. 421 was ..

Cody: Yeah. Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: .. still kind of out of the way. Um.. well, let's talk about the positions you held here. You were in the English Department for a long time.

Isabell Foushee: I was. Um- um.. well, I-- I was in the English Department the whole time [laughs] that I was here. Uh.. I-- after I went into administration, I did teach part-time. Um.. I went in- in 19-- well, Dr. Cahill came in '71, after.

Cody: OK.

Isabell Foushee: And I went to uh.. the Vice Chancellor's Office as Assistant to the Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs in '76, and stayed there for four years.

Riggins: What were your duties in that position?

Isabell Foushee: Everything. [all laugh]

Cody: Whatever needed to be done.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. I worked with grants. I worked with Continuing Ed. I looked after uh.. budgets for those units that reported to Dr. Cahill in- in the Academic Affairs area. I- uh.. I had to see that the catalogue was all correct and printed and um.. I worked-- uh.. I did a lot of uh.. research uh.. oriented things. Like, I had to- to work with uh.. all of the grants when they were—proposals-- grant proposals when they were made, and they had to uh.. be in line with all the requirements from the General Administration. And so it was up to me to read 'em word for word. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: And some of them got really exciting.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Um..

Riggins: All of those scientific ones?

Isabell Foushee: Yes. Yes. But it was, y'know, for the most part, they were very interesting.

Cody: And did you learn how to do this just by doing it or did you get any kind of training to help you with ..?

Isabell Foushee: Well, I did attend a few classes [laughs] in General Administration.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: And, it was just meetings where we went over ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. the kinds of things that they would and would not approve.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Y'know, if a proposal came in, for instance, and it says, "We want to hire a researcher for two years and then the university will pick up the salary from there on."

Cody: Nuh-uh.

Isabell Foushee: That didn't fly.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: That did not fly. We couldn't make a commitment like that.

Cody: Couldn't guarantee that. [laughs]

Riggins: Oh, yeah. Wow. It was lean times for a long time then.

Isabell Foushee: And, I- I guess, one of the most exciting things that we did was when um.. we got the first grant to start the- the Noah Project.

Cody: Right.

Riggins: Oh, right.

Isabell Foushee: That was ..

Cody: That was a big day.

Isabell Foushee: .. big time.

Cody: Yeah.

Riggins: Oh, wow.

Cody: And then you became the first-- I think you were the first Compliance Officer? The first one with that title?

Isabell Foushee: Um..

Cody: Did that grow out of ..

Isabell Foushee: Well, actually Jim McGowan had been doing some of that. Um.. not- not the full compliance because we hadn't-- while he was in-- uh.. he was called the uh.. Special Assistant to the Chancellor.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: But then when we came under the Consent Decree um.. somebody had to kind of ride on that to be sure that all of the requirements were- were met.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And so ..

Cody: Can you explain the Consent Decree to us?

Isabell Foushee: We uh.. were a part of the entire university's Consent Decree when the-- uh.. there was a-- basically not enough racial disparity in any of the campuses because we had predominately black and predominately white ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: um.. university campuses and our purpose was to make extra efforts to in- uh.. increase the racial mix ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. in faculty, in um.. the workers on the- on the campus as well the students, student body.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: And so there were special efforts made in all of our mater-- our printed materials and all of the visits that the um.. Admissions Officers made uh.. and uh.. we had to-- a process by which I had to approve all of the hires for the faculty as well uh.. the SPA employees.

Riggins: Wow.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And the pools had to be of a certain make-up, and if we didn't get the-- that racial mi- uh.. mix that we needed, then we'd have to advertise again and keep it up until ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. uh.. a reasonable period of time to see if we could increase the racial mix.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: But it was uh.. exciting.

Riggins: Challenging.

Isabell Foushee: And then- um.. then I- I also listened to a lot of complaints from housekeepers about housekeeping supervisors or from yard [laughs] maintenance people about their supervisors and from students about their instructors and uh.. it got kind of interesting.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Um.. so we had to- we had to set up a uh- uh.. an acceptable policy-- and now when I'm saying "acceptable," it had to be accepted by the attorneys at Chapel Hill and the General Administration.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. we had to set up the, y'know, uh.. procedure to deal with sexual harassment, a procedure to deal with all kinds of complaints.

Cody: All kinds of discrimination.

Isabell Foushee: Any kind of discrimina-- it was really interesting. I had a-- one of the uh.. guards, the policemen come in one time and he was really ticked off with his-- the chief.

Cody: Mmm.

Isabell Foushee: And it's not the current chief.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: But the-- he just could not get along with the chief, and he wanted to file a discrimination charge. I said, "Well, how do you think you've been discriminated against?" He said, "I don't know, but I know I have."

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And I said, "Well, now look: You're male, he's male. You're white, he's white. Uh.. you're both under fifty-five." He said, "Well, can't I think of something?" [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: But he didn't- he didn't come up with a reasonable ..

Cody: Couldn't come up with anything that would work.

Riggins: "I'm mad at my boss." Ain't that something. It's not really a cure for that.

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Riggins: That's a good one. So, you held that um.. office un-- when you came in as Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs ..

Isabell Foushee: For four years, and then I went into Special Programs, and that was-- uh.. I shouldn't say this, I guess, but it was kind of a budget manipulation. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: And, anyway, I took part of my duties- my- my duties dealings with grants ..

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: I took that into the Continuing Ed office and then we renamed it the Office of Special Programs.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Riggins: In 1980 or so? About?

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm. And I was there only one year and then Dr. uh.. Wagoner asked me if I would do the ..

Cody: Compliance.

Isabell Foushee: .. federal compliance, and I did that until I retired in '87.

Riggins: Mmm. Wow. You- you're a ..

Cody: So, Special Programs ..

Isabell Foushee: And I was also teaching.

Cody: Yeah. Right.

Riggins: You taught this whole time.

Isabell Foushee: I was also ..

Riggins: You'd run a class or so.

Isabell Foushee: One or two classes. Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: What- what did you like teaching in the English Department? Did you chip in and teach all of the composition classes?

Isabell Foushee: I taught- I taught everything from freshman to- to seniors to directed individual studies. Uh.. I taught-- as a matter of fact, because I did have some background in Library Science, I taught the children's literature for years.

Cody: Uh-huh. Right. Right.

Isabell Foushee: And um..

Cody: That was fun, huh?

Isabell Foushee: It was fun.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: It was fun. Um.. but then um.. when I went into administration, I-- the crunch was always at the freshman and sophomore level.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. Right. The massive..

Isabell Foushee: The composition and the survey- uh.. literature surveys, and so I usually did that, because that was where I was most needed.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Well, that was nice of you.

Isabell Foushee: I taught a-- [laughs] I did teach a- a-- one time, I taught a 400-level Milton course, and I enjoyed that. That was lots of fun.

Riggins: Wow. You could get into the British literature-- well, I just consider it, like, when trying to understand Milton. "Paradise Lost." [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Oh, I loved li-- I loved it. Milton's works. He was kind of a- he was kind of an egoist. Uh.. egotistical, and um.. well, I guess, I don't know, sexist?

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: But I still liked his works. He had a marvelous mind.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Riggins: True. Interesting. Wow. So what-- uh.. did you get involved in any student activities where you-- did you help out ma-- uh.. advising the literary club or the literary magazine or anything like that?

Isabell Foushee: Only advising students on- on ..

Cody: Courses.

Isabell Foushee: Course work.

Riggins: Right. Mmm-hmm. That was enough.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Riggins: You had a certain number of advisees who were majors or English majors or.. ?

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. we had a certain number of advisees. Um.. that was before-- you have to remember that was before there was a general college ..

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: .. Advising Center, and um.. when-- we were really pleased when that was finally put-- um.. but we would- uh.. we would advise um.. all majors because everybody had- had advisees, twenty-five or thirty advisees, and we had to do that um.. every quarter, or semester. Ah.. we did eventually get all the semesters.

Riggins: How did you find time-- did you always have to grade papers at home and, I mean .. ?

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yeah.

Riggins: It was definitely more than a forty-hour a week job. It still is.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes. Oh, yes.

Riggins: How'd you find time-- I guess you had a supportive family, right?

Isabell Foushee: Well, uh.. [laughs] If I could get the boys to bed by nine or ten o'clock ..

Cody: Mmm.

Isabell Foushee: And, of course, um.. I insisted that they go to bed while they were still young and in school.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. then I could get some work done.

Cody: Mmm.

Riggins: Right. Whoo. And get up the next day and do it again.

Isabell Foushee: [laughs] Yes. I did uh.. start what we called then the Writing-- the- the- the um.. oh, sh-- phooey.

Cody: Like the Writing Center?

Isabell Foushee: It was the Writing Center.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Really?

Isabell Foushee: It-- um.. we started out using some um.. tapes and uh.. letting the students come there for any kind of remedial help.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And it was all of me and one other one when we first started.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Um.. but uh.. for-- out of that grew the uh..

Cody: The Writing Center.

Isabell Foushee: .. Writing Center.

Riggins: I guess you saw there was a need for writing instruction.

Isabell Foushee: There was. Uh.. we had so many students that-- uh.. who came in without any knowledge of grammar or sentence construction and other things, you know.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: It was ah-- You have to remember, we were not accepting thousand scores on SATs. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: You know, if they had a 750, we'd say OK. [all laugh]

Riggins: Right. Sure. And, y'know, I guess writing is one of the most complicated things to- to master in order to succeed in college.

Isabell Foushee: Well, we tried at one point to get uh.. a writing exam.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: So that all students would have to pass some writing a- accom- accompish- accomplishment before the uh.. graduation, and that went down the tubes.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Um.. they do have to write now to get out of English.

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: But, not um.. what we were hoping for.

Cody: We were trying to ..

Isabell Foushee: We were hoping for a pre-graduation kind of thing.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And we tried very hard to get um.. all of the faculty members to uh.. correct ..

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: .. the writings. But, of course, if they're doing multiple-choice kinds of tests, there's not a whole lot.

Cody: Yeah, they don't ever see any writing. Yeah. But the whole Writing Across the Curriculum movement..

Isabell Foushee: The whole Writing Across the Curriculum, and- and that just fell through.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. we didn't get- almost no support on that.

Riggins: Oh, man. You tried from the English Department?

Isabell Foushee: We tried everything we could. Um.. but it-- back then, there were so-- we were- we were increasing the um.. student-- number of students, but faster than we were increasing faculty members.

Cody: Faculty.

Isabell Foushee: And space.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And that was a big thing. The space. Um.. and so, everybody was just doing double duty, practically.

Riggins: It's heard about every decade in this, y'know, university and college's history, it just seems that every decade, every five years, was a period of growth. There was never a period when it was just stable.

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: It was-- from the get-go.

Isabell Foushee: The only time it was really stable was when we simply could not take any more in because we didn't have anywhere to put 'em.

Riggins: Mmm-hmm. Really?

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Riggins: Even at-- but by that point, you were still over-stuffed.

Isabell Foushee: [laughs] That's right.

Cody: That's right.

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: But over those-- the times, y'know, when the baby boom generation eased off a bit, y'know, UNCW never did. [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: No.

Cody: I mean, the time I've been here, even when nationally it's been plateauing um.. UNCW's still growing.

Isabell Foushee: It is still growing.

Riggins: That's amazing. Well, what- what's the- the department like then? It sounds like you- you kinda got involved on your own initiatives, such as trying to get more Writing Across the Curriculum activities going out and things like that. But were there formal committees? Was that a university ..

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes.

Riggins: Yeah? OK.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, we did have committees, and we got to the point that we had a committee on committees.

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: I've heard about this.

Isabell Foushee: And-- [laughs] that we-- back in those days, we had the town hall-style faculty meetings. Now, of course, they have the Senate, and the Senate meets-- and Faculty Senate meets ..

Cody: It's a representative sort of ..

Isabell Foushee: They pretty much take care of things, but back then, we met all faculty members together ..

Riggins: Very democratic.

Isabell Foushee: .. and everybody had a different opinion.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And sometimes, they would almost come to blows over the- [laughs]..

Riggins: I'm sure!

Isabell Foushee: .. the approach that you should take. And uh.. anyway it was- uh.. it was interesting, but everybody served on at least two or three committees. We had departmental committees ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. for textbooks and that kind of thing, and setting up the- the criteria for the various courses, but um.. we also had the campus-wide committees, and I- I was-- chaired the Calendar Committee, and I chaired the uh.. Curriculum Committee ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. and um.. what else? I don't know. Two or three others, I think, that I was on.

Riggins: Mmm. Well, I'm sure. So ..

Isabell Foushee: It was- it was full-time.

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: All those- all those activities ..

Isabell Foushee: We didn't- we didn't come to work at nine o'clock and go home at twelve. [all laugh]

Riggins: It does not sound like it.

Cody: No.

Riggins: Came early, stayed late.

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Riggins: Well, since you have a tie to Library Science and of course you were in English, you probably spent some time in the library. I have an interest in the library. Who did you get to know in the library-- did you- did you know Helen Hagan?

Isabell Foushee: I knew Helen Hagan, and I served with her on the first um.. Accreditation ..

Cody: Ah!

Isabell Foushee: .. uh.. from SACS Accreditation, and I was on the Library Committee.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. on that-- and yes, I knew Helen Hagan and um.. I knew um.. gosh!

Cody: Louise, of course. Louise Jackson.

Riggins: Louise Jackson.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes. Oh, yes, I knew Louise.

Cody: Betty-Sue Westbrook.

Isabell Foushee: I knew Betty-Sue. Yes.

Riggins: But some of these people ..

Isabell Foushee: And Ron.

Cody: Ron Johnson. Yes.

Isabell Foushee: Johnson. And [sighs] .. Oh! How soon we forget.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Names. [laughs]

Cody: Gene Huguelet, of course, is still around.

Isabell Foushee: Gene Huguelet, yes.

Cody: Did you know Lennox Cooper much? He wasn't here that long.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. not much.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. I think that perhaps I had gone into administration by then, and so I didn't have the contact with the library uh.. I did. Y'know, we used to have to order library books, too.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: We- we-- when- when um.. we decided to put in a Milton course, I had to sit down and do a complete bibliography of Milton books and critiques and so on that I wanted in here.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: It was interest-- and- and we did the same thing with the children's. I did the same general thing with the children's literature.

Riggins: You had to come up with it..

Cody: Select.

Riggins: .. approve it and whatever.

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: What was it like to work with Helen Hagan? She's one of these people who, sort of like Louise, who you just never hear a bad thing about. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Well, she really was very, very nice. She was quiet. Just most pleasant. No. I don't know-- I don't have a thing ..

Riggins: No.

Isabell Foushee: .. ugly to say about her at all. [laughs]

Cody: I think she ran a pretty tight ship, too.

Isabell Foushee: She did! Oh, yes.

Cody: Because, y'know, Ron Johnson talked about people were at their desks ready to work at eight a.m. when they were on the clock. They didn't hang around and y'know chit-chat before.

Isabell Foushee: To begin with, the library was in the Administration Building. All of the section that- that comes out.

Cody: Yeah. The chancellor's suite now.

Isabell Foushee: Yes. That's now the chancellor's suite. All of that was open library.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And that's where we had our um.. uh.. registration for classes. We were all, y'know ..

Cody: Lined up. [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Lined up at the tables there and then, of course, once we had the Hanover Hall done, we'd lined our tables in there to do the- ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. to do the registrations.

Riggins: What about faculty meetings? Where were those?

Isabell Foushee: Um.. they were um.. sometimes in Hoggard, but then once King Hall..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: ..Education Building..

Cody: Yeah, that auditorium.

Isabell Foushee: .. was built, we used the auditorium there.

Riggins: Helen Hagan she's-- the same thing, I hear that she's very nice-- was a very nice person, that-- very caring about her employees. But very "old school."

Isabell Foushee: But very librarian [laughs].

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Serious?

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Riggins: Very serious.

Cody: And she had a big job to build the collection to- uh..

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes.

Cody: .. to suit the accreditation standards.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, yes. Absolutely.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: She had a- she had a full-time job, too.

Riggins: Mmm-hmm. What about Louise? Did you interact with her over the years?

Isabell Foushee: Louise was great! She was always helpful and um.. we would get the librarian to give-- um.. uh.. to meet with our class and go through almost a library orientation. When we were getting ready to do term papers in- in one of two particularly. And um.. they would meet for several uh.. classes in the library so that they could- they could get accustomed to the stacks and- and of course we- we still had the card catalogue then.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And they had to learn how to find books and how to look up their subjects and so on, and so she was always really helpful with that.

Riggins: She would- she would meet with the classes sometimes and ..

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: Did you do the personal name paper where students wrote about their name?

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm. I did.

Cody: Yeah, 'cause I remember Louise had a real nice presentation on just the history of naming that supplemented what you all did.

Isabell Foushee: Right. Yeah. We did that.

Cody: Yeah. I learned a lot from her.

Isabell Foushee: And- and the ki-- the students liked that.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: They would really get into that- that-- y'know, it was so much more personal ..

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: .. for them than, y'know, who was the first man on the moon or things like that.

Cody: Right. [laughs] Yeah, something they could relate to. Well, we have a really big collection of personal name books as a result of that.

Isabell Foushee: Really? Great!

Riggins: That's funny. That's the kind of assignments you- you don't hear about.

Cody: Yeah.

Riggins: When I first started in 2001, there was still once in a while an assignment like that, but now it would be too easy. You'd just type in your name on the computer.

Isabell Foushee: [laughs]

Riggins: There's your research!

Isabell Foushee: Yeah. Well, y'know my-- I did a lot of plagiarism checking.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: In the library, did you?

Isabell Foushee: And-- uh.. right. And- and- many of the students would just find a magazine or a- or a book somewhere and on a- an impersonal subject, you know. They'd just sit down and copy off three or four pages of it and turn it in as if they had done research, and I had done those-- I had done that so much that I could- [laughs] I could tell when it was their writing and when it was something else.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And if it sounded like something that I had read somewhere before, I went to the book and found it.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And, y'know, they didn't think that I would do it.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: But I told 'em I would.

Riggins: You did.

Isabell Foushee: And I did!

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And then I had one student who turned in a paper that another student had failed the se- the semester before!

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: And it still had the red marks and the F on it!

Cody: Oh, my gosh!

Isabell Foushee: And my little notes all over it.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: And he had tur-- and I thought, "Man, he's been smoking something!" [all laugh]

Cody: To do that.

Isabell Foushee: To pull a stupid thing like that.

Riggins: Too easy for you to catch that. [all laugh]

Cody: Here, you don't even have to grade this one. You already have!

Isabell Foushee: [laughs] We've already done this once.

Riggins: That wasn't even a challenge for you! [all laugh]

Riggins: Must've been kinda disappointed. Well, that-- there were some- some good stories, like you were saying, more personal thing. You got to know all the faculty members probably pretty well. That's one thing that I hear current faculty members saying now, is that they wish there was a place for faculty members to meet and so that they could get to know people outside of their division, their department. And you've sort of got the Randall Library Cafe, but, y'know, it's not anything dedicated to faculty.

Isabell Foushee: Well ..

Riggins: Was there a place for faculty members when you .. ?

Isabell Foushee: There was a faculty dining room over the old-- uh.. at the old cafeteria.

Riggins: Oh, really?

Isabell Foushee: And it was a place that, y'know, we all went for lunch, and of course now there are probably as many faculty members in the English Department as there were in the whole school to begin with.

Cody: [laughs]

Riggins: Probably. Yeah.

Cody: Yeah. Hard to have that community.

Isabell Foushee: And it's difficult when you- you don't have a closeness with fifty-five or sixty faculty members in one department, much less outside of the department.

Riggins: It- it's just people just don't talk as much, or you don't have, you don't see as much.

Isabell Foushee: Oh, we were- we were just like a big family for a while.

Riggins: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: And then we started getting invaders.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: All these new faculty members come in.

Cody: That's right. Yeah. Yeah. As you grow, it's really hard to keep that tight-knit community.

Isabell Foushee: I guess. That's true.

Riggins: After Dr. Cahill came, I think that's when a lot of growth starting happening.

Isabell Foushee: Dr. Cahill was one of the best things that ever happened to this school as far as the- the growth, the organization. It was not until he came, that we were divided up into schools.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: We had-- we- we came-- uh.. established the- the College of Arts and Sciences and the uh.. Professional Schools, and um.. he was really tough on meeting the Southern Association Standards.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And uh.. he worked day and night, too. He really did.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: He was- he was one of the best things that ever happened to us.

Riggins: That's interesting, so-- I interviewed him, as well.

Isabell Foushee: Did you?

Riggins: Uh-huh. He was a great storyteller.

Cody: [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Yes uh.. and he brought Oklahoma right along with him. [all laugh]

Cody: The cowboy boots, right?

Isabell Foushee: Yeah. Yes.

Riggins: I can see how he would be real dedicated to the- to the university.

Isabell Foushee: I think he embarrassed the chancellor every once in a while with his ol' Oklahoma talk.

Cody: Uh-huh. He could-- he'd call a spade, a spade. [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Y'know, he'd come out with some "Oklahoma-isms" sometimes.

Cody: Uh-huh.

Isabell Foushee: And the chancellor was ..

Cody: Yeah!

Riggins: He was gone. [all laugh]

Cody: What about the transition from Randall to Wagoner? What do you remember about that?

Isabell Foushee: Um.. there was a lot of mixed feelings um.. I think when- when um.. Wagoner was named the new chancellor. Um.. because maybe, I'm not sure why, but maybe it was because he had been the Superintendent of the Public Schools.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: And there were-- we had a lot of people who kind of looked down their nose on public school. They weren't quite up to par with ..

Cody: Weren't the scholars that ..

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Cody: .. the Randall archetype portrayed.

Isabell Foushee: That's right.

Cody: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: But um.. for the most part I thought that he did a super good job..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. to begin with. Uh.. he kinda slacked off after Dr. Cahill came. [laughs]

Cody: Well, because he had help. [laughs]

Isabell Foushee: Because he had help. But I thought that he- he was very, very good with political contacts.

Cody: Mmm.

Isabell Foushee: And getting- getting money and getting- ..

Cody: Right.

Isabell Foushee: .. uh.. getting the growth.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Backing for the growth. And um..

Cody: He was an administrator.

Isabell Foushee: He was.

Cody: Yeah.

Isabell Foushee: He was very much an administrator.

Cody: Mmm-hmm. So he brought those skills.

Isabell Foushee: He did. Yeah.

Cody: When we needed them.

Isabell Foushee: And we needed them at that time, too.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: 'Cause we had just become a part of the university.

Riggins: Right.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah, so it was important that we- that we had that kind of ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: .. uh.. charming ..

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: ..association. [laughs]

Cody: And Madeline- and speaking of charming, Madeline was the essence of ..

Isabell Foushee: And Madeline was good at- at her role, too.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Very good at her role.

Cody: Very elegant lady.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah.

Riggins: That- that's what I've heard about her, that she was just a real nice asset to the university, in that way.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah, she was. Um.. I don't know how she could stand at the door of Kenan Hall-- Kenan ..

Cody: House.

Isabell Foushee: Kenan House uh.. for hours at the time when the-- when they'd have the- the whole faculty ..

Cody: The holiday party?

Isabell Foushee: .. holiday parties.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Um.. I know that she-- her feet must've hurt.

Cody: And she hosted the Faculty Women, too.

Isabell Foushee: Yes.

Cody: I remember ..

Riggins: Were you involved with that group?

Isabell Foushee: Uh.. no. Actually, that started out as the wives of-- we had-- y'know, the women were way, way outnumbered by the men.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Isabell Foushee: Male faculty, and that started out as the wives of the male faculty.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Right. Faculty Wives Club.

Isabell Foushee: Faculty Wives Club.

Riggins: Sure.

Isabell Foushee: So, I never really got into that one.

Cody: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: Right, and it later expanded to include faculty women, but ..

Isabell Foushee: Mmm-hmm.

Riggins: .. it never really took off, I don't think.

Isabell Foushee: Yeah. It-- but it-- I- I think, for most of us, it remained Faculty Wives. [all laugh]

Riggins: Right. We have a flashing tape here.

Cody: Uh-oh.

Isabell Foushee: Yes, and I bet I have a flashing ticket on my car.

Cody: Ticket on your car. [all laugh]

Isabell Foushee: Maybe not.

Cody: I can walk out with you and make sure.

Riggins: All right. Well, we can always uh.. go onto another tape. If not today, then another time, perhaps?

Isabell Foushee: Well, we'll see about that. It has been fun.

Cody: Yeah, it has.

Riggins: Thank you very much for your memories and your participation.

Isabell Foushee: Well, I'm afraid my memory is not what it used to be.

Riggins: No, it's great. Thank you.

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