AMERICUS (MAY 7, 2012)—In June, Georgia Southwestern State University (GSW) will say goodbye to four employees who, together, have served nearly 100 years working for the University. A reception was held recently recognizing the group which includes Lynda Lee Purvis, John Spencer, Linda Jones and Vera Weisskopf.
Assistant vice president for Academic Affairs, Purvis joined the faculty at Georgia Southwestern in 1991 as an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics before her move to the Office of Academic Affairs. Purvis has been in her current position since 1994. She earned a Bachelor of Science in education from the University of Georgia and a Master of Arts from the University of Alabama.
With nearly 25 years of service, Spencer has been director of Student Support Services at GSW since 1987. Student Support Services is a federally funded program designed to increase college retention and graduation rates for eligible students, foster an institutional climate supportive of low-income and first generation students and students with disabilities, and increase the transfer rate of eligible students from two-year to four-year institutions. Spencer earned a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from Columbus College and a Master of Arts in counseling from Pepperdine University in Los Angeles, Calif.
Of the four individuals retiring, Jones has been with Georgia Southwestern the longest. The director of GSW’s Academic Skills Center, she joined the Southwestern staff in September of 1979. The Academic Skills Center is a campus hub for academic support, houses one of GSW’s largest computer labs, offers supplemental instruction, provides tutoring services, study skills workshops, study space, and many other services aimed at helping students succeed academically. Jones earned a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science from Fort Valley State University.
Dean of the James Earl Carter Library, Weisskopf joined the University in 1998. The library is named after the father of former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and is GSW’s resource center. It contains displays chronicling the life of the Carters. The library also has ample group and individual study space along with two computer labs. Weisskopf earned a Bachelor of Arts from Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio, a Master of Arts from the University of Alabama-Huntsville and Master of Library Science from the University of Alabama.
In April, Helen Tate, Ph.D., of Columbia College in South Carolina was named Purvis’ successor, and GSW Reference Librarian Ru Story-Huffman is serving as interim dean of the Library. Replacements for Spencer and Jones have not yet been announced.
Ready to retire--Left to right: Linda Jones, Vera Weisskopf, Lynda Lee Purvis and John Spencer are all retiring at the end of the school year. Combined, they have worked for GSW for nearly a century.
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