Employee Spotlight - Poole

Aaron K. Poole | Biology Instructor | Serving SIC Since 2011

Aaron K. Poole


A.S. – SIC; B.A. in Biology, M.S. in Zoology, and Ph.D. (in progress – all but dissertation) in Zoology – SIUC

Organizations and Committees:

Strategic Planning Committee, Professional Development Committee, co-chair of Math and Science Club.


Florence M. and Charles L. Foote Award for Outstanding Teaching Assistant of the Year 2009.

What other positions have you held at SIC?

I was an adjunct instructor for a semester before starting full time.

What positions have you held prior to/in addition to SIC?

Before SIC, I was in graduate school at SIUC.  During that time I was lecturer for Introduction to Biology, and was the lab instructor for several zoology courses.

What does SIC means to you?

To me, SIC means fulfilling a major life goal and becoming part of a great circle.  I grew up 5 minutes from campus and attended SIC my first 2 years as an undergraduate.  When I decided to start graduate school, my hope was to teach biology at SIC.  When I was hired here full time, all the hard work I put in through undergraduate and graduate school finally paid off – one of the best feelings one can experience.  Furthermore, helping students better understand the world around them gives me great joy and SIC allows me to do that with members of the community in which I grew up.  

What is your favorite memory at SIC?

Wow, that’s a tough question because I already have a lot of good memories.  I remember when I first started it seemed like nearly every employee stopped by my office just to say “hi”.  That means a lot when you’re feeling nervous, scared, and overwhelmed.  I felt like part of a family and it made that first semester a lot easier.

What do you do in your spare time?

I don’t understand this term, “spare time”.  Hahaha.  Well, when I’m not chasing a 2 year old who seems able to find and do every dangerous thing possible, I’m fairly active in the Masonic Lodge.  I also enjoy gardening, cooking, and really enjoy brewing beer.

Where’s your favorite vacation spot?

My absolute favorite was England but I doubt we’ll make it back there for quite some time.  I also really like the Smoky Mountains.  My wife and I used to go every fall and I hope to return to that tradition soon.

In the movie based on your life, who plays you?

Another really tough question.  Maybe Tom Hanks.  Most characters he plays tend to be the realist, introspective type with a fun side.  And, although I’ve never personally met the man, he seems to be a genuinely nice guy in real life.

If you could have dinner with anyone, who would it be?

Carl Sagan – he was one of the deepest thinkers of the modern age and I would imagine the dinner conversation would last until dawn.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever heard? 

Learn everything you can and never think your way is the only or best way to do something.