Dr. Cindy Clemson retires after 30 years of service

By Natalie Copeland | May 16, 2023

Dr. David Whaley, Melanie Brooks, Dr. Cindy and Mr. Chris Clemson

Dr. David Whaley (left) and Melanie Brooks (right) presented Dr. Cindy and Mr. Chris Clemson (center) with a certificate announcing the Dr. Cindy and Chris Clemson Special Education Scholarship.

MURRAY, Ky. – The College of Education and Human Services (COEHS) recognized Dr. Cindy Clemson’s 30 years of service to Murray State University by hosting a retirement reception on Monday, May 1 in the Alexander Hall Atrium.

Colleagues and friends gathered to express their appreciation for her years of dedication, as Clemson has been a valuable member of the Murray State community for the past 30 years.

The dean of the COEHS, Dr. David Whaley, expressed bittersweet sentiments of Clemson’s retirement, explaining that “while it was a joyous occasion to gather around and celebrate her years of service, it was also a somber reminder to faculty and staff who will miss her dearly when she is gone.”

In August of 1991, Clemson received her master’s degree in Education from Murray State. Since 1993, she has served the University in multiple capacities, including as associate director of Student Disability Services, adjunct instructor and assistant professor in the department of Adolescent, Career and Special Education. Her impact will be felt for years, as her dedication and passion for teaching have left a lasting impact on so many. 

Dr. Don Robertson, vice president of student affairs and enrollment management, worked closely with Clemson in the Office of Student Disability Services. He attended the reception and presented her with a certificate for her years of dedicated service. He later reflected on his relationship with Clemson and said, “for over 20 years, Cindy Clemson worked in the Office of Student Disability Services. She was instrumental in creating and developing one of the top programs in the nation of services and support for students with disabilities. Due to her innovation, passionate dedication for student success and genuine concern for student welfare, thousands of students were able to attend, succeed and graduate from Murray State University. Her advocacy for her students positively impacted the campus community as well as the community at large. I have never worked with a more dedicated, caring or student-oriented professional during my career in Student Affairs.”

Clemson’s work has helped to shape the future of education, and her contributions will continue to influence generations of students to come, as a special education scholarship was established in her and her husband’s names.

During the reception, Melanie Brooks, director of development for the COEHS and University Libraries, announced that the Dr. Cindy and Chris Clemson Special Education Scholarship was established as an endowment by gifts to the Murray State University Foundation, Inc. from the Clemsons. The scholarship serves as a way to assist Murray State students in obtaining an education to prepare them for a career in the field of special education by providing financial assistance and support to the next generation of educators in this vital field.

The COEHS wishes Clemson all the best in her retirement and thanks her for her years of service to the University community. The establishment of the Dr. Cindy and Chris Clemson Special Education Scholarship ensures that her legacy will continue to impact students for generations.

To learn more about the Special Education Program please visit murraystate.edu/specialed.

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