Memories oh history professor go back 53 years
Memories of history professor go back 53 years
Carl J. Bachus | culture editor
Students, faculty, alumni and admirers gathered in McCray Hall on Saturday, Feb. 2, to celebrate the life of Judith G. Shaw, associate professor of history, who died Christmas Day. Shaw, 81, taught various history classes over the course of 53 years at Pitt State.
“I was amazed at the depth of her knowledge and her ability to weave that history around us,” said Provost Lynette Olson during her remarks on behalf of the university. “I have only heard fond and positive comments about her teaching. To say that we will miss her is an understatement.”
Known for her relaxed lecture style and ability to teach without notes, Shaw began her career at Pitt State in 1959 teaching European history. One professor said Shaw loved the university and the students she came to instruct decade after decade.
“She just didn’t meet a person that she didn’t like and loved everyone dearly and was truly dedicated to Pittsburg State,” said Kelly Woestman, university professor of history. “Mrs. Shaw fought battles that made it possible for me and many of the other women in this room to have the careers that we have.”
Woestman, former student and later colleague of Shaw’s, held back tears as she detailed, not only Shaw’s career highlights, but also her dedication to the university and its students.
“She was a single mom in the 1950s, when that wasn’t even accepted on college campuses, raised a wonderful son and she was dedicated to her craft,” said Woestman.
The late professor is survived by her son, Michael Shaw, who talked about his mother, her final months and her love for her city and school.
“It’s amazing to me that anybody would want to work anywhere for 53 years,” Shaw said. “I watched her fight an incredible battle just to be here.”