Mike Metke


As Interviewed by Ethan S, March 13, 2018
"Education really is more a matter of opportunity so some folks who are very, very bright and might change the world just never get a chance to get that education."
Mike Metke

Introductory Profile: About Mike Metke

I interviewed Dr. Mike Metke. He is my maternal grandfather. He was born on a small dairy farm in Wisconsin. He has done many things in his life. Dr. Metke has been a Peace Corps volunteer, police officer, professor, counselor, department chair, vice president of a college, and president of two colleges. He is currently in his 11th year as president of Tyler Junior College. Before that, he was president of what was Lake Washington Technical College but is now Lake Washington Institute of Technology (It’s a mouthful). Even before that, he was Vice President of South Texas Community College.

He has a passion for going on big adventures. Metke has summited over 50 mountains. With him, I’ve been to Washington, Wisconsin, California, Colorado, Washington D.C., Big Bend National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, Costa Rica, Peru, and Spain. His wife/my grandmother, Donna, retired a while ago after being a teacher. She has won multiple local, state, and national teaching awards. Dr. Metke is very nice, and he is generous. Metke always wants to help. He has an I-can-do-anything-if-I-try kind of attitude, and he’s often proven that he can do anything.

We talked about his time working in Costa Rica, his police work, the programs he’s initiated as president at TJC, and his book about his dog, Foxy. Mostly, the interview was all happy, and it made me feel better about the world. He gave a bunch of people scholarships. Sometimes, I heard some of the stuff about his police work, and I just freaked out. One of the people he arrested was a woman driving really drunk at 30 mph above the speed limit with her 3-year-old kid in the back seat.

I really liked getting to go visit him, even though the project kind of got in the way. At the same time, the project was the entire reason why I came.