Special Public Reception Honors Dr. Robin Irving On April 23
CHICKASHA -- Her steadfast hands, expert teaching and gentle temperament will never be forgotten by the hundreds of children -- and " former children" -- in the Chickasha area who know her simply as " Miss Robin."
Dr. Robin Irving, director of the Child Development Center at the University of Science and Arts, will retire this month after 28 years of service to USAO. In addition to teaching, her legacy has been to direct the center, a school for children and active laboratory for college students in early childhood development.
The public is invited to attend a special open reception honoring the respected educator from 3-6 p.m. on April 23 in the Gary Hall Lounge, at the corner of 17th and Alabama.
" We invite former students of Dr. Irving, current children and parents associated with the center, and all former children of the Child Development Center to attend," said Dr. Vicki Ferguson, director of teacher education, and chair of the USAO Division of Education and Speech Language Pathology.
" Dr. Irving leads so much more than a school for elementary children. She coordinates this learning laboratory for college students in early childhood development, providing them with invaluable experience in a real-world setting. She's great with children, but more than that, she is a consummate professional and mentor to college students."
Another reception is planned on campus for faculty and staff to say goodbye, but this come-and-go event is planned by her own division faculty, who hope to give current and former students and parents an opportunity to wish her well.
Irving's service to the college is a personal matter, say staff and faculty members who have placed their own children at the school.
" All three of my children have enjoyed the Child Development Center school," said Ferguson." I usually comment on what a wonderful educational beginning it was as all three were valedictorians and all three finished college -- one has even earned three degrees!"
Music faculty member Dr. Jan Hanson recalls bringing her daughters -- now teens -- to the center.
" Our two daughters, Erin and Mallory, attended school with Miss Robin more than ten years ago," Hanson said. " Our girls could not have possibly received a better start to their education than with Miss Robin. As a teacher of very young children, she is the perfect combination of skill, knowledge, patience and compassion. She was not only a teacher to her children at the center, but also, a teacher to the parents of those children. I can't count the number of times that Miss Robin provided soothing words of comfort and understanding to this frazzled and worried mother! I know that all teachers are overwhelmed with too much to do, but Miss Robin was never too busy to be there for her children and their parents. Our deepest gratitude goes to this very special teacher who did make a difference in all of our lives."