EMPORIA — As family and colleagues gathered Monday night to celebrate Dr. Tom Eddy’s 50th year of teaching at Emporia State University, Eddy looked to the future.
“Maybe 50 years isn’t enough,” he said. “Maybe in the next decade.”
Eddy has taught in the biology department since 1962. At the end of the spring 2012 semester, he will complete his 50th year in an Emporia State classroom.
Dr. R. Brent Thomas, chair of physical sciences, called Eddy incredible and inspiring as he presented the professor with a plaque commemorating the half century of instruction.
While teaching, Eddy also is director of the Emporia State Herbarium, which receives numerous requests for information and identification of plants and animals from teachers, agencies and the general public, according to Jean Schulenberg, herbarium curator.
“Former students remember his classes, his field trips and his never-ending enthusiasm for the native tallgrass prairie,” Schulenberg wrote in a biography distributed at the reception at the residence of ESU President Michael and Karen Shonrock.
“Emporia State has been a lot of fun for me and my family for a couple of generations,” Eddy said, noting that his wife, her mother and two of her aunts graduated from Emporia State. One of those aunts also was a professor.
Eddy’s mother earned two degrees from Emporia State. His wife, Ginnie, earned a degree and his two daughters are also alumnae. Laura Eddy is director of admissions; Blythe Eddy Dody is associate director of the Memorial Union. Son-in-law Aron Dody is also an alumnus.
“We’re deep into the nest of the Hornet swarm,” Eddy said.