Brien Luck may have grown up in a small town, but his view of the world is anything but small. Hailing from Moscow, Tenn., Luck discovered the opportunities for international travel during his time at UT Martin.
Luck was familiar with UT Martin because of his family's connection with the university. He said, "My grandfather went here and my father, too, and my mother. So, I'm a third generation. Maybe my son will be the next one."
During his time at UT Martin, Luck was involved in the Tri Beta Biological Honor Society, was a student senator for engineering and physical sciences (EPS), participated in Mu Epsilon Delta (a pre-professional allied health fraternity), worked as an RA and worked in the Paul Meek Library from time to time.
However, it was during a lecture about teaching English in China by Luther Mercer, former director of the Center for Multicultural Affairs, that Luck began to rethink his future career.
In response to Mercer's lecture, Luck took action after he graduated in 2005. "So, I went to China to teach English. I suppose my degree didn't really apply to that so much but it's going to apply for when I teach in the future," Luck said. "So, yes. I went to China for six years and met my wife there and traveled to a lot of other countries like Korea, Indonesia, Mongolia, the Philippians, and Thailand. I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it a lot."
Now, with familial ties to China, Luck plans to return after he completes his master's degree in secondary education. Luck said, "It was a good experience in China, people treated me well. When I was looking for jobs, for example in Saudi Arabia, I noticed that they want teachers to have a teaching certificate from their states. I don't have that yet, but that's what I'm here to get."
As to why he came back to UT Martin, Luck said, "I decided that these days, really, a bachelor's degree is really not enough it seems like. So, I decided to come back to America and study. I decided to come to Martin because I'm familiar with it. I like UT Martin. I had a good experience here before. I'll be graduating in December, but I kind of don't want to leave Martin, but I guess that's the way it goes."
The sky's the limit for this third-generation Skyhawk as he looks ahead at his family's future. He said, "I'd like to go abroad again, maybe to Saudi Arabia, Papua New Guinea, maybe France."
Office of University Relations is the official source for all non-sports releases from the University of Tennessee at Martin. Materials on this page are updated on a regular basis.
The Office of University Relations is ready to assist you with finding a speaker for your special event or an expert to comment on a current news story.
See photos from Commencement, Greek Events, and more on Flickr.