Five African Americans Who Have Announced Their Retirements From Higher Education Posts

Melvin K. Smith, the longtime special events coordinator at Auburn University’s Career Center, has announced his retirement, after 31 years on the staff. Smith’s mother was a cook at Auburn and his grandfather was a chauffeur for the university’s president.

Smith holds a bachelor’s degree and master’s degrees in counseling and elementary education, all from Auburn University.

Cassandra Vaughn, university veterinarian in the School of Agriculture and Applied Sciences at Alcorn State University in Mississippi, has announced her retirement. She has held the post since 1996.

Dr. Vaughn earned a bachelor’s degree from Alcorn State Univerity in 1984. She went on to obtain a doctor of veterinary medicine degree from Mississippi State University in 1988.

Renée A. Middleton has announced her intent to step down as dean of The Gladys W. and David H. Patton College of Education at Ohio University at the end of June 2021. Dr. Middleton has served as dean and tenured professor of counselor education for the last 15 years.

Dr. Middleton received a bachelor’s degree in speech and hearing from Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan. She holds a master’s degree in clinical audiology from the University of Tennessee, and a Ph.D. in rehabilitation administration from Auburn University in Alabama.

Glenda Jones, director of career services at Prairie View A&M University in Texas, is retiring after a  career spanning nearly four decades. She began her career as a clerk-typist in the admissions office at the university. She was named director of career services in 2003.

Jones holds a bachelor’s degree in management and a master’s degree in counseling from Prairie View A&M University.

Janice Gibson, director of development and alumni affairs at Alcorn State University, retired from the university at the end of December after 27 years of service. She was promoted to director of development and alumni affairs in 2012.

Gibson was a 1993 graduate of Alcorn State University and later that year was hired as a secretary in the Office of Alumni Affairs.


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