During the celebration of the University of Montevallo’s 121st Founders’ Day on Oct. 12, UM honored deserving staff, faculty and alumni.
The University of Montevallo named Dr. Mary Ann Gray, adjunct instructor of teaching, leadership and technology, as the recipient of the 2017 Adjunct Teaching Award for her dedication to the University and to her students.
Gray received her bachelor’s degree in education of the deaf and hard of hearing from the University of Alabama in 1997 and her master’s degree in early childhood special education from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2000.
In 2013, Gray earned her doctorate in organizational development from Grand Canyon University.
Gray began teaching at UM in 2009 as an adjunct faculty member for the program in Education of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, the only program of its kind in the state of Alabama. Over the course of nine years, Gray has been a key figure in the program’s development, sharing her expertise with students through various deaf studies courses.
Dr. Elizabeth Thrower and Dr. Sally Smith of UM’s College of Education nominated Gray for the award because of her “dedication to the excellence in the classroom that is expected of UM graduates.” Thrower and Smith additionally said that Gray exemplifies all the qualities of a professional educator through her teaching, knowledge, abilities and disposition.
Gray’s nominees commended her further for the numerous extra hours she spends not only assisting UM students, but practicum students as well, providing them with hands-on experience in her Birmingham public school classroom.
Gray stated that her experience as an adjunct at UM has been one of immense growth and reward.
“It is always humbling knowing the responsibility that has been entrusted to me,” said Gray. “Preparing pre-service teachers is a demanding and challenging job, but one filled with the hope that each graduate that leaves becomes a great teacher.”