The College of Education and Human Development is committed to enhancing equity in educational achievement and health outcomes, fostering innovation and development, and influencing policy and practice in the fields of education, health, sport, business and government.
Transform lives through leadership and innovation in Education and Human Development.
History of the College of Education and Human Development
While the college was officially established in 1969, we can trace the history of educator preparation at Texas A&M as far back as 1880. That year, some of the very first graduates of A&M College reported to the alumni association that they worked in public schools. These individuals began the long-standing tradition of Aggies serving in the field of education. To better support our former students and all Texas educators, we provided summer training for superintendents and teachers.
Over the next few decades, a number of academic departments were established to address the need for qualified teachers. The financial crisis and depression that occurred in 1929 led many students from various departments to pursue a teaching certificate as a means to earn money. By 1936, the Department of Rural Education was officially changed to the Department of Education.
A different concept of education was acknowledged through the late 1940s and early 1950s. Administrators, faculty and state leaders began to understand that producing qualified teachers for high schools would lead to the production of better students to fill the departments of A&M College. In 1954, The Texas A&M Council on Teacher Education formed to guide the departments of Agricultural Education, Education and Psychology, Industrial Education, and Health and Physical Education in this purpose.
Texas A&M, like many institutes across the nation, went through a period of transformational change in the 1960s. Beginning in 1963, women are allowed to enroll in limited numbers. The following year, Texas A&M became racially integrated. This expanded access to education for a number of African American students in the state. By 1969, the establishment of a formal College of Education was approved by the Board of Directors with Dr. Frank Hubert as dean. The College of Education enrolled 1,307 students in its first semester, including 694 graduate students and 613 undergraduate students.
The following decades saw the development of a strong, cohesive college through the recruitment of faculty from major research universities across the nation and by building quality programs. When Dr. Hubert stepped down to become Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System, Dr. Dean Corrigan took up the charge of continued excellence. Under his leadership, the college revised its degree programs in response to the educational reform movements of the late 1980s. Many of these reform movements centered around addressing the teacher shortage across the nation, especially in math and science. Initiatives to better prepare teachers were supported further through the establishment of the college’s Development Council whose 25 charter members included NASA astronaut and Challenger commander Dick Scobee.
In 1991, the College of Education appointed the university’s first female dean, Dr. Jane Stallings. The college’s teacher education programs continued to be recognized nationally as they were the first in Texas to be re-accredited following the passage of House bill 72, which reorganized these programs in the state’s colleges and universities. Toward the end of the 20th century, the college was renamed to the College of Education and Human Development to reflect the full scope of academic programs. The college also restructured to form four departments: Educational Psychology, Educational Administration and Human Resource Development, Health and Kinesiology, and Teaching, Learning and Culture. During the 30th anniversary celebration of the college, the Shaping the Future sculpture was unveiled in Harrington Plaza. This sculpture is the first on the A&M campus to feature a woman in a prominent role. The sculpture represents the impact teachers have in shaping and molding the lives of students.
Since this time, the college has continued its commitment to excellence in preparation of leaders in the fields of education, health, business and sport. With nationally recognized faculty experts, staff and students, the college maintains its standing as a leader among its peers.