Dr. Terry Simpson announces retirement

Dr. Terry Simpson announces retirement

Oct. 19, 2017

Dr. Terry Simpson, Maryville College professor of secondary education and director of teacher education, has announced that he will retire at the end of the 2017-2018 academic year.

Simpson, who holds degrees from the University of Tennessee, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Texas A & M University (formerly East Texas State University), has taught secondary education at Maryville College since 1990.

He has served as the director of teacher education since 2001, and he was chair of the Division of Education from 1998 until 2012. In 1996, 2002 and 2007, he received Maryville College’s Outstanding Teacher of the Year award. To date, he is the only MC faculty member to have been selected for the honor three times by juniors and seniors.

Classes taught include: Philosophical and Theological Foundations of Ethical Thought, Sociology of Education, Values and Decisions in Contemporary Society, American Institutions: Education and Religion, Instructional Strategies for Science and Social Studies, Student Teaching Seminar, Practicum in Methods and Materials, General Methods and Classroom Management, Adolescent Psychology, Foundations of Education, Supervision of Secondary Student Teachers, and Teacher Education Admission Seminar.

In 2000, Simpson was awarded a prestigious Fulbright Scholar award to serve as a lecturer at the University of Tartu in Estonia, where he taught Instructional Strategies for Secondary Teachers and Education, as well as Social Issues in Education in the United States. In 2002, he received a Fulbright Senior Specialists grant, which allowed him to work with the Saudi Ministry of Education in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

From 2008 until 2012, he served as the director of the East Tennessee Math/Science Partnership Grant, which was funded by the United States Department of Education and the Tennessee Department of Education with the goal of improving math and science instruction, as well as student test scores.

Simpson has served on multiple committees at the College during his tenure. He has also advocated for education at the state level, serving on several committees and advisory boards. He was a member of the implementation working group for meeting Council for the Accreditation of Education Preparation (CAEP) standards for the Tennessee State Department of Education. Maryville College was chosen as one of five higher education institutions for the inaugural Network for Education Preparation Partnerships in 2016-2017.

“For the past 27 years, Terry Simpson has been the face of teacher preparation at Maryville College,” said Dr. Barbara Wells, vice president and dean of the College. “Beloved by students and revered by alumni and professional colleagues, he has mentored scores of teachers who have responded to the high ‘calling to teach.’ His graduates were supported in their efforts to meet his high expectations and continue his legacy of care and concern for the well-being of their students as they serve in schools across the United States and abroad. Few professors can claim such a far-reaching and ongoing influence. His wisdom, coupled with his expressed concern for all people, created a philosophy of education that has permeated all aspects of the Maryville College licensure program.”

Several events planned to honor Simpson:

  • During Homecoming weekend, a tailgate “meet and greet” event will be held on Sat., Oct. 21 from 10:30 a.m. until noon in the tailgating area near Honaker Field. Students, alumni and friends are invited to stop by to visit Simpson and write a message for him in a memory book.

  • Simpson also plans to walk with education students, alumni and faculty in his final Homecoming parade at 1 p.m. on Oct. 21.

  • Also on Oct. 21, students, alumni and friends are invited to stop by the Anderson Hall Education Materials Center between 10 a.m. and noon and between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. to participate in a video project to honor Simpson. A video booth will be set up to record individual two-minute messages to Simpson; these videos will be incorporated into a longer video that will serve as a parting gift for him when he retires.

  • On Sun., Jan. 28 from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. at McArthur Pavilion, Simpson will host “Stories by the Fireside.” Attendees are invited to a night of storytelling with Simpson and roasting marshmallows by the fire.

  • Simpson will hold his “Last Lecture” on Thurs., April 12 at 4 p.m. in the Clayton Center for the Arts’ Harold and Jean Lambert Recital Hall. A reception will follow the lecture.

Read Simpson's blog, Bless You My Children, which includes a recent post about his retirement announcement. For more information and updates about retirement events, please follow the Maryville College Teacher Licensure Program Facebook page. 


Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the Fall 2017 semester is 1,181.