A Mary Washington alumna recently sent a very special thank you message to one of her former professors. It wasn’t a Hallmark card, nor did it have photos of flowers or cute little puppies. The expression of appreciation to her beloved professor was in the form of gift agreements establishing two endowments in the name of Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English Donald E. Glover.
Dr. Glover retired from Mary Washington in 1998 after 37 years of service. When Dr. Gary Richards – current chair of the Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication – visited Dr. Glover at his home, the former professor was surprised and extremely honored. Dr. Richards explained the purpose of the two endowments and told him of the significant estate gift that was behind the naming honor.
The donor, an alumna from the Class of 1971, wishes to remain anonymous in her giving, but she wanted to let her professor know how important his teaching was to her during those formative years.
She recalls that Dr. Glover was light on lectures, yet strategically led his students to understand and appreciate works of literature by asking questions to stimulate critical thinking and discussion. She says students learned for themselves as they came to realize the full meaning and importance of what they had read. She also credits Dr. Glover for her love of the sometimes challenging, but always rewarding, Henry James.
During his tenure, Dr. Glover was a widely respected member of the faculty. He began teaching English at Mary Washington in 1961 and served as department chair from 1970-73. He also was the founding director of the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program and was instrumental in establishing Mary Washington’s chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. In 1976, Dr. Glover became the fifth recipient of the Simpson Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching; in 1988, he was named one of Mary Washington’s first Distinguished Professors.
The Donald E. Glover Scholarship in English will help encourage and inspire students to develop a love for literature and critical thinking. The intention behind the Donald E. Glover Faculty Award in English is to reward, preserve, and enhance what the donor sees as one of Mary Washington’s most distinguishing characteristics: quality of faculty and the exceptional educational experience they provide. Overall, she hopes the English faculty can follow in Dr. Glover’s footsteps, while having a positive and lasting impact on students’ lives.
The UMW Office of Gift Planning respects and honors requests for anonymity. If you have any questions about estate planning or the giving process, please call Jan Clarke at 540-654-2064 or Michele Collins at 540-654-2067.
To read articles about James C. Llewellyn ’87, Carolyn Eldred ’66 and Martha Keegan ’18, visit the Heritage Newsletter.