Lauri Smedley has been a full-time professor at Sacramento City College (SCC) in Sacramento, California for the past 11 years. Prior to coming to SCC, she taught as an adjunct professor at Cosumnes River College in Sacramento for 2 ½ years. Professor Smedley holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Information Systems, a Bachelor's degree in Vocational Education, an Associate of Science degree in Management Information Systems, and certificates in Online Teaching and College Counseling. She has also been a presenter at several workshops.
Professor Smedley's course load includes Business English, Business Communications, various Microsoft applications courses, Keyboarding, and Virtual Office Careers & Technologies. Most of her classes are taught online to local community college students. The Virtual Office Careers & Technologies course teaches students how to create and operate their own home-based businesses. It is offered each fall at SCC.
Prior to teaching at the community college level, Ms. Smedley taught high school and Regional Occupation Program (ROP) business and computer courses to adults and high school students for nine years--the last two of which included courses in entrepreneurship. The entrepreneurship courses were close to Ms. Smedley's heart, because students actually created their own product businesses and held selling events on campus. Students were able to keep the proceeds from their sales, which motivated the students to choose their products wisely.
Ms. Smedley's interest in virtual office careers and entrepreneurship began in the 1990s when she operated her own successful, part-time, home-based business in computer services for six years while attending college and teaching part-time. Her business offered secretarial services such as word processing, database management, spreadsheet creation, desktop publishing, report typing, and resume design. Her clients included business executives, fundraisers, non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and individuals. Working at home allowed Ms. Smedley to spend more time with her husband and two young children when she was not attending college, teaching, and/or studying.
Prior to owning and operating her own business and becoming a professor, Ms. Smedley worked full-time in administrative assistant positions for nearly ten years. One of the best pieces of professional advice Ms. Smedley has ever received was from her dad when he told her that she needed to take typing in high school (in the 1970s). He said, "If you learn how to type, you will always have a job." Dad was right! Every career move that Ms. Smedley has made has been a direct result of knowing how to type.
Currently, Professor Smedley is conducting research on virtual
entrepreneurs in various career fields. This research will lead to a textbook
for her college students and for anyone else who desires to become a virtual
entrepreneur. Having taught several classes on virtual office careers and technologies
during the past few years, Professor Smedley has found that her students are
interested in a variety of virtual careers including, but not limited to virtual
assisting. Through this research and her book, Professor Smedley believes that
she has come full circle in her professional development. To read more about
her research and to take the questionnaire, click the following link http://wserver.scc.losrios.edu/~smedlel/VA_Questionnaire/VirtualBizQuestionnaireInformation.htm.