POSTED: Friday, July 12, 2013 - 2:16pm
UPDATED: Saturday, July 13, 2013 - 8:26am
EDINBURG, TX (KVEO NEWS CENTER 23) — Turning 50 is a major milestone for anyone. That's certainly the case for a UTPA political science professor who has just celebrated 50 years of teaching at the university. Here's this week's News Center 23 report.
It may be just another day of instruction for Dr. Glynn Morgan. But for his political science students and department colleagues, it's a time to celebrate his career as an educator. That's because this summer, Dr. Morgan made history by teaching longer than any other faculty member at the Edinburg institution. In fact, the Mississippi native celebrated his 50th year in the classroom.
Dr. Glynn Morgan, "I feel older but I don't feel any different than I did all the years I was doing that because I've enjoyed every minute of it. If I didn't I wouldn't be doing it."
Morgan started at UTPA in 1963. Although the University hired him to teach political science, he was also asked over the years to step in as Dean of Students and serve as director of several programs including Work Study, Student Activities and Men's Housing just to name of few. He also volunteered to sponsor the Student Government Association. While these positions took a lot of his time, they never kept him away from the classroom. He's conducted anywhere from one class to as many as five per semester and has taught somewhere in the neighborhood of 27,000 students while under four university presidents. He says there has never been a dull moment.
Dr. Glynn Morgan, "You heard what the Supreme Court did yesterday, that two guys can get married and get benefits. The students don’t have a clue you know that’s just something revolutionary and they just don’t realize that and this morning we are going to talk about that in class and they're just going to be, hopefully it will open their eyes."
While Morgan doesn't like to boast about himself, many of his former students believe he played a major role in their successful careers. Among them, Hidalgo County District Attorney Rene Guerra, Valley Senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa and El Paso Senator Jose Rodriguez who Morgan saw at a recent UTPA commencement ceremony for the first time in over 30 years. As the speaker, Rodriguez acknowledged Morgan to the graduates and their guests.
Dr. Glynn Morgan, "If it hadn't been for Dean Morgan is what he referred to me, he said I wouldn't be where I am today and that makes you feel just a little bit good, that I had some, played some role in whatever I did to affect his life one way or the other."
Morgan says the institution has transformed over the past 50 years. The most significant difference he's seen is the disappearance of pencil and paper in the classroom to reliance on electronics like smart phones and I pads. Despite the many changes, he still loves teaching political science and has no immediate plans to retire.
I'm Sandra Quintanilla reporting for UTPA and News Center 23.