Professor retires after 39 years

Transitioning to Retirement Dee Pierson is retiring after 31 years of working as the residential living office assistant at Washburn. Faculty, staff and students honored Pierson with a retirement reception on May 3, 2012 in the Living Learning Center lobby.

Anjelica Willis / Washburn Review

Gary Forbach, a psychology professor at Washburn University, is retiring after teaching for 39 years.

“It is actually called ‘transitioning to retirement,’ in which I’ll be still teaching here for the next three years, but online,” said Forbach.

Forbach has been commuting from North Carolina back to Kansas for many years now and wants to be closer to his family.

Through his teaching career, Forbach has great memories of Washburn and the advantages and disadvantages that came along with teaching.

“The most challenging thing when it came to teaching was the enrollment process. It is a negative concept and positive,” said Forbach.

Throughout his teaching career at Washburn, he has inspired and helped his students,  including Meaghan McEachern, sophomore psychology major.

“Forbach always tries to make jokes and get the class interacting,” said McEachern.

Joe Currin, psychology major, also mentioned the impact Forbach had on his college education.

“Forbach would meet you anywhere to help you at any time. It could be midnight at a coffee shop. He was there to help his students,” said Currin.

Forbach believes in an education and how important it is for now and the future.

“An education is the most critical thing,” said Forbach. “A degree is not an education. Don’t just focus on getting a degree; it’s just the beginning.”

Forbach also believes that it’s an advantage to be able to start over at Washburn and help people that realize they need a degree. Without  a college prep education, it can be hard.

He also feels that an education can help give you what you need.

“The world is difficult, but being prepared can help you for the things it will throw at you,” said Forbach.

Currin also said that Forbach had an impact on his students by making the information they learned useful and applicable for each student.