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Nacogdoches education organizations celebrating 90 years

Updated: May. 5, 2021 at 7:26 PM CDT
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NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - Many would agree educators are some of the hardest working people today. It was no different in 1931 for teachers, including women educators in Nacogdoches. Ninety years later two professional education groups are still promoting education through changing times.

“Women are smart. And women have been smart forever,” Dr. Judy Abbott frankly says.

But the focus is on the last 90 years -- when predominantly women traveled to Nacogdoches to the Stephen F Austin State Teachers College.

“Teaching was an outlet for women’s continued learning and the sharing of knowledge.”

Abbott, the dean of education at SFA is a member of Delta Kappa Gamma, a professional honor society for key women educators. Dr. Annie Webb Blanton got it started back in 1929 at UT. In 1931 she traveled to Nacogdoches to install its chapter.

“So, Delta Kappa Gamma Sigma chapter, which is the chapter here in the Nacogdoches area, we absolutely believe in the importance of literacy and reading.”

It’s also for the encouragement of future, present and retired educators.

Even thru a pandemic, lessons are learned, according to member Amanda Johnson.

“Education has changed in response to that I home going forward we’ll encompass some of those new models.”

Over nine decades, American Association of University Women’s Nacogdoches chapter has accepted new ideas and change, including opening its membership to,

“Anyone who wants to advocate for women and leadership in educational roles,” said Dr. Katherine Whitbeck, AAUW Nacogdoches president. “So, both men and women can join AAUW.”

A woman of the year is selected.

“Who has given to her profession. To the community.”

And Expanding Your Horizons encourages middle school girls.

“And this all came from AAUW doing the research that showed girls usually lost interest in the math and sciences when they got to middle school.”

Both organizations value the educational paths blazed by independent thinking women

The organizations support scholarships. Each will have celebrations this month marking the 90th anniversary.

Delta Kappa Gamma Sigma chapter will gather tomorrow, Thursday from 4pm to 6pm at the Old University Building.

AAUW, Nacogdoches will have a dinner on May 11 at Clear Springs at 5:30. Both locations are in Nacogdoches.

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