Teresita 'Tess' Magsaysay
Published in Inside - Volume VI, No. 5
On December 18, 2000, Teresita "Tess" Magsaysay passed away in New York City. At Teachers College, she earned an M.A. in 1987 and an Ed.M. in Applied Linguistics in 1991.
Trained as a linguist, Magsaysay studied Tagalog, the native Filipino language, and its use with English poetry as a way of negotiating the complexities of modern life. She saw Tagalog as a mirror of the inner, private life and English as an expression of external life in what linguists call "code-switching."
Magsaysay showed generosity and leadership to her fellow students at TC in many ways. From 1991 to 1998, she served as a member of the Alumni Council and was a Trustee Nominee of the College.
One of her most enduring accomplishments was the legacy of the Tess Magsaysay and Ken Boxley Scholarship that she and her husband, Ken Boxley, endowed in 1997. The scholarship helps the College to recruit the best students into the teaching profession.
Magsaysay, who was born in the Philippines, earned a B.S. in Education and a B.A. in English from the College of the Holy Spirit, a private college for women in Manila. Earlier she had studied nursing and journalism at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila.
From 1971-1976, Magsaysay was a graduate student at the University of the Philippines and studied Asian/Philippine Literature and Educational Administration. She was Assistant Professor of English at San Beda College (Manila) from 1978-1983. As a member of the Dean's Council she was involved in curriculum revision and college reorganization work to implement recommendations of the Philippine University accreditation association. In 1983, Magsaysay was named Department Chair of Languages at San Beda College.
She also worked for the Philippine Ministry of Education as a consultant of a national testing research group that revised the Philippine National College Entrance Examination.
She wrote about language teaching methodology and edited English textbooks. Magsaysay co-authored a textbook, Essentials for Effective Writing for first-year college students in 1981.
She is survived by her husband Ken Boxley and her daughter.
In lieu of flowers, her family has requested that donations be made to:
The Tess Magsaysay and Ken Boxley Scholarship Fund
c/o Teachers College, Box 306
525 West 120th Street
New York, NY 10027