A Fond Farewell

RetireesAt a reception filled with laughter and hugs, a large turnout of well-wishers congratulated two longtime faculty members on their retirement in May.

Dr. Michèle Stacey-Doyle is the newest member of the University faculty to receive the title of Professor Emeritus of English. Michèle arrived at McKendree in 1986, where she spent the last 27 of her 35 years as an educator. She taught nearly every course in the English department, provided leadership and institutional memory, chaired the Division of Language, Literature and Communication for many years, and helped to develop and direct the honors program.

“I think I am proudest of the time I have spent in the classroom with students and outside the classroom with them,” she said. “Early in my time here, I remember loud and raucous end-of-the-year parties with the McKendree Review staff, usually at our house. And there are the trips I took with the English seminar students to London for ten days. Of course, I also treasure the small, quiet moments with a single student who, on his or her own, discovers his or her writing voice.

“I will miss the give and take with students and colleagues. I will miss the terrific hallway meetings with my colleagues. I will miss the greetings and smiles from the support staff - the custodial crew, grounds keepers, dining hall staff, secretaries.”

If she could give one “last chance talk” to her colleagues, she would tell them to “take risks. Speak out against inequity and injustice, no matter how small it may seem. Speak truth to power, no matter the personal cost. Establish rigor in the classroom and engage students in that rigor. Rely on those around you (and they are numerous) who know this place well. Laugh - often and loudly. And when things get tough, remember - these too shall pass. I wish I could thank all those who have made my years here so amazing.”

Dr. Sandra Lang, CPA, CFE, retired as chair of the School of Business and an associate professor of accounting. “I think the way the School of Business faculty works well together is partly my doing,” she said, adding that her colleagues knew she wanted and respected their input.

She reflected on her 14 years at McKendree. “The many moments with students, when I realized they were getting it or that they appreciated my working with them, are all precious,” she said. The student, for example, who never spoke up in class but started doing it because she made it nonthreatening. The ones who thanked her for challenging them or made a point of letting her know they got a job. The ones who wanted her to meet their parents. These were the special moments.

She will miss “being a part of the McKendree community. When I come back to visit, I will be just that, a visitor. Visiting will be great, but it will also remind me that I have moved on.”

Her parting advice? “Don’t try to do too much, but do all that you can do and do it well. Enjoy the process.”