The University of Memphis held its summer Commencement Sunday, Aug. 14 at FedExForum.
A total of 684 degrees were awarded, including 52 doctorates.
The speaker was Dr. Thomas Fagan, recipient of the University’s 2011 Willard R. Sparks
Eminent Faculty Award. A professor of psychology and coordinator of school psychology
programs, Fagan is regarded as a founding father and the foremost historian of school
Dr. Thomas Fagan
Fagan holds a bachelor of science in education degree and master’s and doctoral degrees
in school psychology, all from Kent State University. He began his career at the University
of Memphis in 1976, when he joined the faculty as an associate professor of psychology.
He was promoted to full professor in 1980. Before joining the U of M, Fagan taught
psychology at Western Illinois University and was a visiting lecturer at John Carroll
University. His areas of specialty in school psychology include its history and development,
accreditation, credentialing, and professional issues.
He has also acted as a consultant to a number of school systems and colleges, including
the College of Santa Fe in Albuquerque, N.M., Virginia Polytechnic Institute, The
Ohio State University, the Louisiana Department of Education, and municipal school
systems throughout Illinois. Fagan has published widely, including six books and hundreds
of monographs and journal articles. He also has served in several editorial positions
with professional newsletters and journals. Fagan was editor of Communiqué, the official
newsletter of the National Association of School Psychologists, from 1981 to 1987,
and he has been consulting editor for History of Psychology since 1997.
Among his many honors, Fagan is the recipient the Lifetime Achievement Award and the
Presidential Award for Exceptional Service to the Profession of School Psychology
from the National Association of School Psychologists. He also received the Dorothy
H. Hughes Memorial Award for Distinguished Service in Educational and School Psychology.