Jay Rouman, age 73, longtime media educator for the Mt. Pleasant Public Schools, passed away at his home on Sunday, April 3 after a long illness.
Jay lived most of his life in Mt. Pleasant, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and an M.A. in Broadcast & Cinematic Arts from CMU. He retired from teaching in 2009 after more than three decades as Director of Broadcast Technology for the Mt. Pleasant Area Vocational Center. His students went on to highly successful media careers throughout the country including the Los Angeles film and television industry. A highly gifted teacher and engineer, he singlehandedly maintained and expanded a unit that became widely recognized for its excellence. As Jay wrote in one of the nationally published textbooks to which he contributed, “Teaching audio and video production in a vocational secondary education program combines the excitement of the broadcast industy with the energy and enthusiasm of teenagers.” He unfailingly brought that sense of excitement to those teenagers for their continuing professional and personal benefit. Jay was the ultimate advocate and nurturer for students.
In addition to his duties at the Vocational Center, he hosted a number of foreign exchange students including those from Norway, Germany, Italy, Poland, Korea and Taiwan. Local students in need of mentoring also stayed with him for extended periods of time, greatly benefiting from his hospitality and unfailing guidance. In addition, both before and after retirement, Jay applied his extensive computer skills as a consultant for Gratiot-Isabella RESD where he helped establish projects providing early dial-in Internet access for thousands of teachers and students throughout the state and for every student in mid-Michigan. His technical expertise contributed significantly to the success of the regional educational fiber-optic network (MMNET) which services districts in five counties.
Jay was preceded in death by his parents, Hercules and Ferne Rouman.
A gathering of friends to celebrate Jay’s life will be held on Saturday, August 20th at 1:00 pm at The Brass Cafe. Memorial contributions can be made to the American Red Cross, http://redcross.org/donations. Please request funds to be used for Mid Michigan.