Ernest C. “Brownie” Brown may hold the record for most years of service at Maryville College, but Arthur Story Bushing ’43 gets the award for breadth of service. In his 50 years as an employee with the College, Art Bushing assisted Maryville College in any way he possibly could.
This impressive breadth of service begins just after his graduation in 1943, when this English major/math and physics minor was hired to teach physics. His appointment was interrupted by a call to active duty. During World War II, Art spent three years in the Army -- 17 months of that in the European Theatre and four months in combat. For his heroic service, he was awarded the Bronze Star.
In 1947, he returned to his beloved Alma Mater as Assistant Professor of English. By that time, he had studied for a summer at the Sorbonne and had begun work on a master’s degree at the University of Tennessee.
Over the next half-century, he would not only earn the master’s degree and continue his education at the University of Iowa, Duke and other universities, he would become a rock in the English Department. His teaching load frequently included courses in 17th and 18th Century British Literature and an upper-level course entitled “The Novel in English.” He chaired the department on two separate occasions.
And whether they had him as a professor or not, Maryville College students across the decades know him for his Manual of Outlining and Research.
In 1957, Art was asked to divide his time between academics and administration when he was tapped to become the College’s Dean of Men, a position he held for eight years. He was asked to direct the College’s Summer School in 1968, a position he held for nine years. In 1973, he initiated the Continuing Education Program, directing it for five years. And for three years, faculty looked to him to coordinate the Freshman Inquiry Program.
A model for lifelong learning, Art was always studying something. His research subjects included William Shakespeare, Henry Fielding and World War I hero Alvin C. York, whom Art knew personally in his boyhood home of Jamestown, Tennessee.
He and wife Dotty Barber Bushing ’42, who graduated from the College in 1942, lived and raised their children in a house on Jones Avenue, just across the street from campus. Art left the classrooms of Anderson Hall in 1996, but he and Dotty were ever-present supporters of the College, participating in and attending various college functions, assisting the College’s Advancement Division and serving as College historians.
Art was recognized with the Maryville College Medallion in 2000. In presenting the award, President Gerald W. Gibson praised this Anderson Hall Legend’s service: “His devotion is unceasing and his support untiring. He did far more than was asked of him and far more than could have been expected.”
The majority of it – in Anderson Hall, Room 314.
Art passed away Oct. 29, 2008 – just a little more than a week after being honored as an Anderson Hall Legend.