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Remembering Dr. Jane Ingram by Meagan Cole

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Remembering Dr. Jane Ingram

Meagan Cole

Dr. Jane Ingram built the Computer Science department from the ground up about thirty-five years ago. She began working as an assistant professor in 1978 and quickly found her home within the walls of Trexler. Known for being a petite spitfire, students responded positively to her motivational way of teaching. She had a way of making class time engaging and fun for which she later received several awards and recognitions including the Dean’s Service Award in 2010. Her most recent acknowledgment came in the form of speaking at the 2011-2012 Convocation, where she announced her retirement. Despite her absence, Dr. Ingram’s impact on the school was never forgotten.

Then, a somber mood fell over campus when e-mails and social media messages announced her sudden passing. Dr. Ingram died Saturday, July 13, 2013. Although her death was sad news indeed, her impact remained unforgettable. The Roanoke Times as well as the college took part in remembering the many contributions she made to Roanoke College and its surrounding community.

A memorial service held especially for faculty, students, alumni, and staff occurred on Wednesday, September 4th in the Atrium Chapel. With candles lit and a smiling photo placed for all to see, a number of people spoke of her fondly with humorous tales about class time, as well as those more serious and uplifting. To call the scene one of mourning would be inaccurate, regardless of the tears, because the moment felt more inspiring, reminiscent of her days at the school.

Dr. Ingram once said, “It has been a challenge, but a challenge I’ve enjoyed.” At the time, her words addressed the struggle of teaching, but the same quote could have been applied to her view on life. The challenge existed, but the challenge was worth being alive—worth giving back so many influential learning experiences to the other lives she touched. She will be sorely missed.