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Celebration set to honor NCTC Professor Ron Melugin

by Elizabeth F. Dieter | Sep 15, 2016 <p> </p>

In celebration of his fifty years' service teaching history and government at North Central Texas College, Professor Ron Melugin will be honored with a special retirement reception on September 30, at 2:30 p.m. in the Activities Center (100 Building) on the Gainesville campus of the college. The public is welcome to attend this event, especially his former students and colleagues.

Professor Melugin's tenure at NCTC began in 1965 soon after he completed his bachelor's and master's degrees at Texas A&M Commerce; he later completed post-graduate study in history and political science at the University of North Texas, the University of North Carolina, and the University of New Mexico. His Alma Mater, Texas A&M Commerce, recently recognized his accomplishments by designating him a University Ambassador, the highest honor that a department can bestow upon an alumnus.

In addition to teaching an estimated 16,000 college students, Professor Melugin's contributions to NCTC extend well beyond the classroom. In 1976, he interviewed six members of the first graduating class of 1926 during the fiftieth anniversary celebration of that class. From 1985-1993, he served as faculty advisor for the community college honor society, Phi Theta Kappa, guiding the organization to statewide recognition. Under his leadership, NCTC students won election to state office and Professor Melugin was named a Hall of Honor sponsor by the state organization.

Professor Melugin not only has participated in numerous collegiate activities, but he also has generously volunteered his time and talents to serve the community. For example, he has been a member of the Cooke County Historical Commission since 1986 and has chaired the Commission for the past ten years. Through his diligent efforts, Gainesville's place in state history has been commemorated with fifteen historical markers, including three on the Gainesville campus: College Founder, Lee Clark; Gainesville Junior College; Hubert H. Moss, Chemistry Professor. In addition, Professor Melugin played a key role in beginning Gainesville's annual remembrance of the Civil War event known as the "Great Hanging."

In 1997, he authored a workbook for students of a humanities class: Cooke County: Its History, Economics and Culture "The Cemetery Course." Since then he has utilized Fairview Cemetery as an "outdoor classroom," relating stories from the earliest days of settlement to the present era. He is the author of the popular book Heroes, Scoundrels, and Angels: Fairview Cemetery, Gainesville. His book, North Central Texas College: The Oldest, Continuously Operating Public Two Year College in Texas, is nearing completion.

His longtime colleague, Pat Ledbetter, noted, "We hope the community will join us in showing appreciation for the many ways he has enriched the life of the college and the community during a half century of service."