Jadeline "Jade" Tallon, who is from Merizo, Guam, recently became the Master of Business Administration (MBA) secretary for the College of Business at Eastern New Mexico University.
"Everyone has been so welcoming and supportive," said Jade. "I am learning something new every day, and I enjoy that."
Her goal for her new position is to "support the administration the best I can by helping to grow the MBA program."
Jade, who was the secretary for the Department of Health and Physical Education at Greyhound Arena from 2015 to 2017, said her favorite part of ENMU is the community. "Although there is no ocean view, it is like home: small and family-oriented."
She is passionate about education. She took an opportunity that was offered to her to become a teacher and ended up enjoying it.
"While working for an insurance company in 2006, I received a call from my mother, who was a teacher at Notre Dame High School, a private Catholic high school I attended," explained Jade. "She said my former teacher, who was now the principal, was looking for a health teacher.
"My mom asked if I was interested and of course, I was extremely hesitant because I heard all the stories, including hers. She persuaded me to apply, which I did. I was interviewed and got the job. I was scared, nervous and anxious like many first-year teachers, but the veteran teachers, including my mom and the principal, were very helpful and supportive. I fell in love with the profession, became licensed and taught at my alma mater for eight years."
She was nominated for the "Catholic School Teacher of the Year" award at Notre Dame High School. She considers that to be one "memorable accomplishment. The nomination itself was a great feeling, proving I had a passion for teaching."
Jade, who received her bachelor's degree in family consumer science with an emphasis in health and nutrition from the University of Guam, is pursuing a master's degree in education with an emphasis in secondary education at ENMU.
"Once I moved here in 2014, and was employed by ENMU in 2015, I realized it was the perfect opportunity to just go for my master's. Due to my teaching experience in Guam, I chose secondary education. I am currently licensed to teach, but definitely want that graduate degree first, so I am working on it."
Jade's father, Larry Mullikin, is retired from the United States Air Force. He works for the United States Department of Agriculture in Guam. Her mother, Donna Mullikin, was previously a teacher. She now works in Guam's hotel industry.
The most influential people in Jade's life are her parents. They taught her to have a strong work ethic and to cherish family values.
"They are the hardest-working individuals I know and have always put family first. I am truly grateful that our entire family is extremely close because of them" said Jade.
Her husband, Thomas Tallon Jr., serves in the Air Force and is stationed at Cannon Air Force Base.
Jade and her husband are planning to visit relatives in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, and watch the Steelers football game.
She encourages anyone interested in traveling to visit her hometown. "If you have never visited Guam, I suggest you put it on your bucket list. It is the Pacific's hidden gem!"
Her favorite hobby is cooking. She makes native Chamorro dishes, and her husband and mother-in-law are teaching her how to cook Mexican dishes.
She hopes to volunteer and join organizations in the local area. To get started, she recently volunteered with the United Way of Eastern New Mexico for "Reality Check Days" at area high schools.