Northwest College

Teaching & Learning Center

Faculty spotlights

Learn more about what makes Northwest college’s faculty truly excellent! 

In collaboration with The Committee on Faculty Development and Morale and the office of College Relations, the TLC is excited to showcase the great work of Northwest College's educators! In this faculty spotlight series, we will feature members of our faculty that are recognized by nominations from their peers based on demonstrated excellence in teaching, mentoring/advising, service, or scholarship. Spotlights will also be promoted by the Marketing, Communications & Web office in a variety of media.

Raymond Floyd

Posted: April 22, 2023

Tucked inside the Science & Math Building is the office of a man whose contributions extend well beyond Northwest College, and even this planet. Ray Floyd, best known to students as an instructor in one of their computer science, engineering or physics courses, is in fact one of the men who helped land American astronauts on the moon as part of Project Apollo in the 1960s and ‘70s.

As for how he ended up at a small college in Wyoming after a long career in the aerospace, electronics, and programming industries? Ray and his wife simply decided they wanted to live in the western U.S. instead of Florida where they’d been for nearly 30 years. But they weren’t sure where exactly, so they decided to take a scouting trip.

“We flew to Albuquerque, rented a car, hopped on I-25 and started north,” Ray said, describing the process and how they eventually chose Cody over Bozeman. “We went back to Florida, put our stuff in a U-Haul, and came on out. Just like that.”

That was in 1994, and they’ve never regretted it.

Though he was by that point retired, Ray still needed something to do and initially started his own business. But it wasn’t until 2010 that he saw an online ad for an adjunct position in the engineering program at Northwest College. It was a perfect fit and Ray was quickly hired. Two years later, he became a full-time faculty member and has thoroughly enjoyed his second career.

While most people may find northwest Wyoming a remote place to live, that wouldn’t be the case with Ray. After growing up in Louisiana and initially attending McNeese State University, he left school to join the Air Force where he began working on radar systems. That led to his career path in electronics and programming, part of it with NASA, as well as major electronics manufacturer Philco-Ford. Along the way, he had somewhat lengthy stays in such far-flung locations as the Marshall Islands and Nome, Alaska. But he’s settled comfortably in Cody now with his wife, a couple of horses and some barn cats on the South Fork.

“I thoroughly enjoy working with young people. It’s fun to see them work with the engineering and programming concepts when the light goes on and they realize they can do this.”