Teacher Profile: Malcolm Cleaveland
After moving from his state-of-origin, “New Joisey” to Cleveland, OH, OLLI-Instructor Malcolm Cleaveland was signed up for the magazine Science News. Little did he know, this would be the beginning of his passion for the sciences, ultimately leading to a career in them.
Cleaveland was born in New Jersey and moved to Cleveland with his family at the age of four. From Chagrin Falls, OH, (a satellite town) Cleaveland attended school and enrolled at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree. Cleaveland went on to serve in the Army, fighting in Vietnam with he 101stAirborne Division. Once stateside, Cleaveland met his wife in Clemson, SC, where he stayed and earned another Bachelor’s degree and a Masters from Clemson University. Shortly thereafter, Cleaveland moved from Clemson to Tucson, AZ to pursue a PhD in Geosciences at the University of Arizona Lab of Tree-Ring Research.
After all of this education, Fayetteville, AR was where Cleaveland finally settled down, to pursue research and teaching opportunities in the Tree-Ring Lab at the University of Arkansas. Once he entered forestry after his tours in the Army, Cleaveland found himself writing his Master’s Thesis on dendrochronology and tree rings. Carrying this research with him to Fayetteville, Cleaveland has become an avid teacher of classes for the UofA and OLLI.
Since retiring from teaching, Cleaveland has revived his interests in model railroading and even started a small business making accessories for his hobby. Cleaveland has also served on the OLLI curriculum committee as a member.
When asked about his experiences teaching for OLLI, he said, “The students want to be there… They ask great questions, keep you on your toes. The other volunteers are a joy to work with.”
Finally, when asked about his favorite memories with OLLI, Cleaveland couldn’t choose, stating, “So many, how to choose? Maybe being on the Curriculum Committee, with fantastic people. Maybe teaching and seeing the people really get involved in the subject.”