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Fall Edition
Volume 98, Number 2

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Raeann Hamon

Goals set in motion (continued)

Confessions of a ‘goal maniac’
From seeing her work in print to helping students achieve their aspirations, Raeann R. Hamon finds exhilaration and satisfaction in setting and achieving goals

I have recently decided that I am a goal maniac. I thrive on setting goals and taking on new challenges. After dedicating years of my life to a single pursuit—earning my Ph.D.—I, like so many others, experienced a void, a hole, when it was accomplished. Whether it was due to having been raised in a family that embodied a strong work ethic, being a driven firstborn child, or having a personality that likes adventure, I began looking for what to do next.

Since “academics” are supposed to make professional presentations, secure grants, and author peer-reviewed articles and books (and this all sounded like fun to me), I set my sights on these goals. I remember jumping up and down (reminiscent of my old high school cheerleading days) in the hall outside my office at Messiah College on Hoffman building’s third floor when I received my first external grant. The funding helped me to integrate intergenerational service-learning into the Sociology of Aging course that I teach and afforded me the opportunity to collaborate on the program with one of my gerontology students, who was my intern. Similarly, I recall the sweet sense of accomplishment when, after a year of formulating a book prospectus with a colleague and a publisher, we were able to sign a book contract. Seeing my work in print still gives me a thrill, particularly when it is co-authored with a colleague or one of my students.

I have recently decided that I am a goal maniac. I thrive on setting goals and taking on new challenges.
Most recently, I am venturing into a totally new domain, one that really stretches me. At the invitation of one of Messiah’s distinguished alumna, I have joined her in working to raise funds to establish an endowment for the Department of Human Development and Family Science. The interest from this endowment will be used to support professional development activities for students within our department. My current goal is to help my students make their professional goals a reality. And I, too, will share in their satisfaction when I see them jumping up and down in the halls outside my current office on the third floor of Messiah’s Boyer Hall.

—Raeann R. Hamon ’83 is a distinguished professor of family science and gerontology, chair of the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences, editor of International Family Studies: Developing Curricula and Teaching Tools, co-editor of Mate Selection Across Cultures, and associate editor of the four-volume International Encyclopedia of Marriage and Family.

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