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Education

Chris Williams: called to be an educator

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(photo courtesy Chris Williams)

The road that led Chris Williams to the position as Head of School at Porter’s Chapel Academy has not been a straight or certain one.

His life’s road split when, as an adult, he gave his life to the Lord. “It was then that I realized God had a special calling on my life,” Williams said, “but I wasn’t exactly sure what it was.”

At that point, Williams had earned a degree in marketing from Mississippi State University. He had married, started a family, and was settled comfortably with successful career in sales and a position with International Paper Mill.

Once his heart belonged to Jesus, Williams began working actively with the youth in his church. It was then he realized that he was being called to not only preach God’s word but also work even more closely with young people.

He began taking master’s level classes in education from Alcorn State University in 1998 and found himself entering an entirely new field.

“Being an educator is the good Lord saying, ‘I have a mission for you for the sake of My children.’ No amount of money can pull you away from a true calling from the Lord to do His work,” Williams said.

He spent the next few years teaching at Dana Road Elementary, Vicksburg Junior High and South Park Elementary. He then spent one year as a lead teacher back at Dana Road, two years as an assistant principal at Warren Central Junior High, and the next four years as the eighth-grade principal.

At that time, he changed course again and began a full-time job as pastor of Wayside Baptist Church in 2013.

Williams said he felt God continue calling him to do more, so he worked to further his own education. He received an Education Specialists Degree in Educational Leadership from Mississippi College in 2014.

While attending MC, he was mentored by Christian educators who helped foster his desire to make a difference in education on a larger scale.

“I only stepped away from education for six months, but I was missing out on all of the fun,” he said. That’s when his road led him to Porter’s Chapel Academy.

Moving from the Vicksburg Warren School District to the Head of School at PCA was a leap of faith.

“There are a lot of unforeseen hurdles and unexpected challenges that come along with an administrative position,” Williams said. “I was accustomed to the classroom where you’re mostly concerned with making sure every one of your students is getting the best possible education you can provide. To take on that responsibility in a much larger scale has been trying. Add to that everything from handling student discipline to leaking ceilings. An administrator pretty much has their hands in a little bit of everything.”

Williams has proven he is not scared of change, and he said he will continue to tackle his latest role just like he approaches everything in his life — “with a lot of prayer and faith” that God will guide him in choosing the right direction should his life’s road fork again.

Copyright © 2021 Vicksburg Daily News.

Vicksburg Daily News