WSU graduate Kayla Hutton with her parents Dan and Kathy
Kayla Hutton with her parents, Dan and Kathy

Dan Hutton’s success as a teacher and role model was on display at Saturday’s Fall 2011 commencement celebration. His daughter Kayla, who was also his student for six years, was the standard bearer for the WSU College of Education. She earned that honor with her 3.93 grade point average–the highest among graduates from the Department of Teaching and Learning.

Kayla was among 41 graduates picking up College of Education bachelor’s degrees. Eight education masters and seven education doctorates were also conferred. There was plenty of tradition and holiday sparkle in Beasley Coliseum and one giant new ornament– the digital scoreboard that gave everyone a closeup view.

Kayla’s personal cheering section included Dan, who teaches at Tekoa High School and is one of several teachers in the family; her mom, Kathy; and her fiance, Ryan Burchett. Ryan is a 2009 WSU graduate and agriculture educator in Cle Elum.

Kayla Hutton carries college banner
Kayla Hutton, teacher and standard bearer

Come spring, Kayla will be doing her student teaching at Woodard Elementary in Spokane. Besides landing a teaching job, she looks forward to more studies in her interest areas of human development and reading. And she’ll always look back fondly on her days learning and laughing with other students in her “block” or cohort of education majors in Pullman.

“The things I will remember most about the College of Education are the relationships I’ve established with my ‘block mates’ and teachers,” she said. “We’ve spent a lot of time together and gotten to know each other really well.”

As educators, Kayla and her classmates are well positioned to heed commencement speaker Brig. Gen. Julie Bentz, who encouraged them to “do what is right, love what is good and leave the world a better place than you found it.”