Professor Profiles

Brooke Thompson

Finding the right professor for you can make or break your grade, but if you don’t know anyone in your major it can be hard to find a professor who suits your learning style. To help you out, we have put a spotlight on a few professors who you just may want to take!

Christopher Kadlec

According to, Dr. Kadlec is one of the highest rated professors at Georgia Southern. He’s been at GS for ten years and he teaches within the IT department. Each semester he is responsible for educating  roughly 90 to 100 students, but that number doesn’t take into account the number of thesis assignments he takes on as well. His favorite class to teach is usually the one he did not teach the previous semester because he worries about classes becoming stale after teaching them too many times.

Dr. Kadlec said, “The curriculum for IT should be changing all the time, right?… I like it to be fresh… I don’t want to get into those ruts.” He concedes that “looking back at the old masters” can be good, but that information  must be able to be applied to something new.

His favorite thing about teaching is being a learner too. He sees his classroom as a stage of sorts, so accordingly, he enjoys the theatrics of leading his students to learning in the classroom. However, what he looks forward to most is those “aha moments” from students when things finally click for them. For future IT students, and students in general, Dr. Kadlec advises to look to the future and have a goal in mind.

He said, “Some people are on campus because of gravity. The earth is just holding them here and they just don’t know where else to go.”  He wants students at GS to learn with a purpose. Dr. Kadlec is invested not just in the content he teaches, but also his students’ success. It’s so evident that he loves his job that it’s no surprise that he is one of the top rated professors at GS.

Cheryl Aasheim

Dr. Aasheim came to the GS IT department in 2002 after she earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Florida. She admits that she is a Florida Gator by nature, but there is room in her heart for Georgia Southern too. She added a master’s degree in math to her education and began her career in that field; she now teaches data mining, database, and Python Programming. She decided to go back to school for her PhD in order to do what she loves: teaching as a professor.

With a laugh, Dr. Aasheim admitted she was a data person. When she first came to Statesboro, she fell in love with the people and the university. As part of her interview process, she had the opportunity to teach. Dr. Aasheim said, “I loved the students. They were interactive. They had a lot of questions. They seemed really friendly, interested, and motivated.”

Her favorite place on campus is the IT Building, but she also loves the stadium and has season tickets. There is variety in IT with a creative track, networking, and an analytics track, but you must like computing and should not enter this field just because of the money. IT has a little something for everyone, but like Dr. Aasheim, you have to have a passion for it.

Darin Van Tassell

Originally from the Statesboro area, Dr. Van Tassell first attended Georgia Southern as a student. That was in August of 1994 and this May he will retire.

He fondly remembers his first published piece of literature, a poem in Reflector magazine. He currently teaches international studies and said, “This is a big part of my soul. I’ve been going to school here a long time.” He taught the first international studies course the university offered in 1995 and there were only four students in the class.

Today, there are 18 sections with more than 35 students. He loves teaching introduction to international studies and senior seminar for international studies as well.

Dr. Van Tassell said, “I do think that one of the best ways to learn is forcing students to be uncomfortable… some cases it’s assignments, some cases it’s the topics that we do.” He believes that we learn better this way, but Dr. Kadlec invested in more than just the university. He believes that Statesboro is a wonderful place to live and teach. It is “where his feet are.” He describes GS as a place that is bigger than us, but the students, faculty, and staff define our university.

Dr. Van Tassell said, “I don’t just work here. I’m also a fan.” While he likes many places on campus, Dr. Van Tassell’s favorite is easily J. I. Clements Stadium where he played baseball when he was a student at GS before coaching until the year 2000. He does like all the various athletic venues that our campus has to offer. With this parting wisdom that relates back to his coaching days, Dr. Kadlec said, “We have this notion that practice makes perfect and that’s really a misunderstanding of practice. Practice makes permanent.”  

It is evident that the professors at Georgia Southern truly love their jobs. They are all passionate, and they want their students to learn and be successful. Each of these professors, like all of the educators on campus, are quite different; however, a common thread became evident. They are invested in the growth and success of Georgia Southern and the students who attend this institution.