Just spit it out: Tippett travels world, excels at life


By Lindsay Cameron

Raised in three different countries, Lindsey Tippett’s interest in other cultures primed her to be one of four French education majors on campus.

Her father’s service to the Air Force resulted in many moves around the world. Tippett was born in Germany while her father was stationed there in the Air Force. They lived in Arizona and Italy before settling in McConnelsville, Ohio in 2000, the town where Tippett’s mother spent her childhood.

In Italy, Tippett remembered her neighbor teaching her mother an amazing spaghetti sauce with Canadian bacon chunks. She said many people had dead ducks hanging in their kitchens to cook for dinner and every house had a fence.

These changes allowed Tippett to become adaptable and open-minded.

In McConnelsville, Tippett actively participated in Malta United Methodist Church’s youth group and choir. She played high school volleyball and softball in Morgan County along with other academic clubs, such as French club.

During June of 2008, Tippett and some friends in her French club joined a group of students from Canton, Ohio to travel to Europe. They toured Normandy, Louvre valley, Paris and London.

Tippett recalled a time in her hotel in Paris when she called the front desk to schedule a “wake up call.” She had spoken to the receptionist in French, and when she hung up, Tippett and her friends jumped up and down, laughing and screaming.

“I used my French,” Tippett said she had yelled.

She and her friends laid on the lawn of the Eiffel Tower for three hours to see the lights that twinkle on the tower at the beginning of each hour; they saw the display three times and thought it was beautiful.

Tippett said she chose Ashland University because she described her prospective visits as “the wedding dress effect” – the snow was blowing crazily (Tippett loves the snow), the campus was beautiful, and everything about AU seemed like the “perfect fit.”

Professor Lisa Bansen-Harp, Tippett’s academic adviser, said she enjoys having Tippett in class and has witnessed her joy for the French language at the Pause-Café, a weekly gathering of French speakers in the Eagle’s Landing on Thursdays. Bansen-Harp said Tippett is “stalwart” in keeping conversations rolling during the Pause-Café.

“I would have to say that Lindsey’s most prominent characteristic is her effervescence,” Basen-Harp said. “She is a very positive influence in any group of people I have seen her interact with. It is difficult for others to remain glum around her.”

Not afraid to use the language in the classroom, Basen-Harp said Tippett will inspire her future students to like the language with her enthusiasm.

“If I had to identify one thing I would like to pass along to her, it’s the idea that teachers can have high expectations of their students and still have a really good time with them,” Basen-Harp said.

Tracie Huffman, Tippett’s mother, said she would speak French everywhere-at the dinner table, in the car, etc.-yet was still surprised when she chose it for a major, because Tippett also loved math and science.

“She’s not so much in a box…She’s willing to break out and learn new things and broaden her horizons,” Huffman said about her daughter’s love for the French language.

Huffman said her daughter has a great sense of humor and makes sure she tells others how important they are to her. Huffman said Tippett’s spiritual relationship with God strengthened during the moves in her childhood before settling in Ohio, because there were many rough times and Tippett had realized she “needed God on her side.”

Huffman said she has learned many spiritual lessons from her daughter, the most memorable she described as a “profound moment.”

Huffman said she used to complain about her appearance in front of Tippett, then in eighth-grade. According to Huffman, Tippett had said to her mother, “Can you imagine how much you hurt God when you say things like that? Because he made you.”

Huffman said her daughter truly does live the faith in which she believes, which is often a testimony to Huffman.

Tippett was awarded the Foreign Language Department’s Freshman Merit Scholarship last spring, a scholarship from the Ohio Language Association for excellence in French, and the Grace Campbell scholarship for aspiring teachers. She also received a scholarship from Malta United Methodist church.

Editor’s Note: Just Spit it Out is a feature in which an AU student is chosen at random via closed eyes, a pointed finger and the student directory. Everyone has a story to tell-we’ll get it out of you.