Professor 'Andy' Anderson, Director of TC's
Published in Inside - Volume V, No. 6
William P. Anderson, Professor Emeritus of Education, who enjoyed a 31-year career on the TC faculty, died at his home in Asheville, North Carolina, on December 5, 1999.
Professor Anderson died of liver cancer. A private memorial service was conducted by his brother, Professor James Harold Anderson, who is a retired professor at Western Carolina University, and members of the immediate family.
Anderson attended local public schools and graduated in the class of 1943 at Mars Hill High School. He served in the Navy during World War II; he then enrolled at Mars Hill College, from which he received an associate's degree. He transferred to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he completed a bachelor's degree in Education (1949).
Committed to a career in teaching at the university level, he remained at UNC to earn his master's degree in education in 1950 and a doctorate in 1953. He joined the faculty at Teachers College in 1954 and rose to the rank of full professor.
Nicknamed "Andy" at TC, Professor Anderson was especially known for his work with students. At his retirement "roast" in 1986, Anderson spoke of his devotion to his students. "I happen to put my highest priority on working directly with students and Teachers College was good enough to permit me to do it. I did it and I'm glad that I did it," he said.
At the same event, Associate Professor Frank Smith spoke of Anderson as a colleague who brought his special brand of optimism to Teachers College. Smith said of Anderson that "he empowered each of us as colleagues by often making us think and behave better than we believed we could. We thank the Carolina country boy who sustained us with his belief in the American dream."
TC faculty and friends set up a scholarship fund in memory of his son Michael soon after Anderson's retirement. In agreement with the family, the scholarship will now be named the William P. and Michael B. Anderson Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded annually to a master's or doctoral student majoring in educational administration.
A highlight of Anderson's professional career was a six-year assignment in Afghanistan with a team of educators from TC. The 47-member team assisted Kabul University and the Ministry of Education of the then royal government of Afghanistan in the elementary and secondary education systems of the Central Asian nation.
The team provided assistance in the preparation of curricula and textbooks for the schools assisted in the development of an Afghan system for the preparation of elementary and secondary teachers. Another major task was to assist Afghan administrators to acquire and develop administrative skills.
Anderson began his assignment in Afghanistan in 1961 as a specialist in educational administration and as an associate director of the team. In 1963 he became director of the team and served in that capacity for four years. Just before returning to the United States to resume his teaching duties at TC, he was presented with a medal of distinguished service to education by the king of Afghanistan, Zaher Shah.
The family suggests that those who wish to make memorials do so through the charity of their choice. If you would like to contact the family the address is: 327 North Main Street, Mars Hill, NC 28754.
Inside TC would like to thank the Asheville Citizen Times, friends and colleagues, for the information provided.previous page