Paula Wagner
Accounting Specialist II

Prior to joining the Center for Literacy Studies, Paula worked as an educational sign language interpreter in her home state of Florida, at Tennessee School for the Deaf, and with Knox County Schools.   Her experiences with the deaf community began at the age of seven.  She has continued to volunteer and work professionally with and on behalf of the deaf community, which includes one of her four children.  

While living in Florida, she worked extensively with a team of interpreters across the state to increase standards for school systems hiring sign language interpreters.  It was this process that encouraged her to complete her Bachelor’s degree.  Seven hours short of an associate’s degree, four kids in middle and high school, Paula began taking one night class each semester.  After her husband’s transfer to Tennessee, Paula enrolled fulltime at the University of Tennessee  graduating magna cum laude with a B.S. Child and Family  Studies. She is currently working toward her Master’s degree in Special Education. 

Paula joined the Center for Literacy Studies in April 2010 as a student intern.   During her internship, she worked with the state ESOL project providing instruction and support to English language learners, logistical support for The Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC) Pathways to School Readiness project, Adult Education, Even Start, and TDOE Reading First projects.   In her current position, Paula provides logistical and financial support for Adult Education and DRS Corporate Connections projects.

In her spare time, when not taking classes, Paula and her husband Jim enjoy being empty nesters and spend as much time outdoors as possible.