But Lampert is up to the task and says he looks forward to continuing the "good work and legacy created by my colleague and friend Diana McCain."
Lampert comes to Merrymeeting from Sanford Adult Ed where he has served as director since 2011. He's been an adult education professional since 1996, and holds a Masters in Adult Education along with adult education director certification through the Maine Department of Education.
He describes his educational philosophy as
"student centered, whether in academic or community education venues. For academic students, what can we do to reduce or remove as many barriers as possible to ensure their educational success? For enrichment, to make sure adult education enhances the quality of life for the communities we serve."
Additionally, Lampert co-authored two books,
Understanding What You Read with Diane Helder, and
The New Teacher of Adults with Professor Mike Brady.
Lampert adds, "I also have also been published in
The Journal of Adult Learning, Fordham University and
The Spirit of Teaching, University of Southern Maine."
It sounds like adult education is more than just a profession for Lampert; it's something that inspires him to share his expertise beyond the program where he leads. That includes teaching
in the University of Southern Maine's Graduate School in Adult and Higher Education as an adjunct faculty member since 2002.
Departing Director McCain says, "Allen is an excellent fit as Merrymeeting grows into its new regional shoes."
On July 1, Regional School Unit 1/Wiscasset Adult Education will formally become part of Merrymeeting. The merger adds the communities of Bath, Arrowsic, Woolwich, Phippsburg and Wiscasset to the ones Merrymeeting serves in Brunwsick, Topsham, Bowdoin, Bowdoinham, and Harpswell.
Lampert knows that every community is different and poses different challenges.
"I am looking fo
rward to listening to members of the Midcoast communities about what they expect from MAE, and how we can continue to provide quality community education opportunities and what n
ew and exciting programs we can provide each community," he says.
Lampert went on to share, "If you talk to my former staff in Sanford they will tell you about my love of ice cream and sugar in general ... For many years I kept a candy jar in my office stuffed with chocolate, and when it ran out; I got letters and postcards in the mail at my house telling me the candy was out and when was I going to replenish it. No joke. The Sanford staff will lose 1,000 lbs. in my absence."
And in Lampert's presence Merrymeeting will gain an experienced leader committed to adult education and lifelong learning.