Dr. Charles Collier, dean of the Cumberland University School of Education, will kickoff the spring semester’s Second Cup of Coffee lecture series Tuesday, Jan. 12 at 12:30 p.m. in the K-Room on the CU campus he discusses his experiences during the Vietnam War.
Collier served in Vietnam during the early 1970s as part of CORDS (Civil Operations and Revolutionary Development Support), a unique hybrid civil-military structure formed to coordinate the United States civil and military pacification programs.
The McMinnville, native said the experience pushed him into a career choice he had never before contemplated.
“I was there during the end of the war, and I worked closely with the children in some of the country’s orphanages,” Collier said. “I’d never before considered a career in education.”
After Vietnam, he began a long career in education, serving as a school administrator, a special education teacher and working with at-risk youth. Collier returned to Vietnam’s Quang Nam Province in March 2008, a place near where he served as an Army advisor in 1971.
The lecture is free and open to the public. Cumberland will continue the series throughout the spring semester, with renowned Southern author John Egerton scheduled for Feb. 9, Watertown Mayor Mike Jennings on March 16 and CU Professor Stuart Harris on April 13.