Maureen E. Kelly, Ph.D. - Professional Achievement Award 2019

With two degrees from the University of Massachusetts and a Ph.D. in Comprehensive Vocational Education from Ohio State, Maureen Kelly’s teaching career spanned 45 years. Her employment included high school and college teaching positions at three universities. By the end of her career, it is estimated that she recruited and trained approximately a quarter of the Family and Consumer Education (FACS) teachers in Arizona. She retired from the Norton School in 2016 and holds the title of Faculty Emerita.

Possessing a strong desire to solve practical problems, Maureen spent her career doing just that. Her early research focused on enablers and inhibitors to research productivity at land grant universities. While she published numerous papers and won awards for this work, it was soon apparent that her focus needed to shift to what content and methods Arizona Family and Consumer Sciences teachers were using.

Up to that point, Arizona professional development courses were delivered in person.  With the advent of computers, this practice seemed unnecessary and impractical.  Thus, she began a long line of distance education research, helping teachers learn how to use role playing, cooperative learning, & simulation games to teach content.  Later, she created the first online course in the Norton School.

Working in tandem with her colleagues at the University of Arizona and at Arizona State University, she received several large grants to develop curriculum units utilizing these methods. By the time those were completed, there was only one FACS teacher education program in the state and Maureen was the only full-time faculty member. That early investment in distance education served her well!

Nationally, Maureen served on the editorial boards of several prominent journals and co-authored several books and monographs. She is most well known for her leadership in creating teacher preparation standards that connect community, career and work.

Institutes and Centers

The University of Arizona