Former and current Andover residents Elizabeth Arnold and Robert McDonald were recently honored by Northern Essex Community College as recipients of the college’s Making a Difference Awards, which were presented in honor of the college’s 50th anniversary.
The awards honor influential members of the NECC community who have made a difference in the lives of others. Recipients included alumni, retired and current faculty and staff, and community friends. A longtime resident of Andover, the late Elizabeth Arnold was a professor emeritus of English at the college and served as department chair. Arnold developed and coordinated the journalism program and was founding advisor to the award winning NECC student newspaper, The Observer.
Arnold was nominated for the award by three of her former students, Carl Russo, staff photographer at the Eagle Tribune and formerly of the Townsman, Dan Lyons, technology editor of Newsweek Magazine, and Rod Doherty, managing editor of Foster’s Daily Democrat. All spoke glowingly of the profound influence she had on them.
As Dan Lyons wrote, “Betty was a powerful, passionate teacher and an important role model for me and countless other students. Some of us went on to careers in journalism, while others pursued other paths. But we all remember how Betty inspired us to work hard, to find careers that we loved, and to take pride in what we did.”
McDonald, started teaching mathematics at the college in 1967 and went on to become the division chair of mathematics and science, division chair of math, science, and technology, dean of academic affairs, professor of mathematics and computer information science, and in 2002 was given emeritus status. Upon receiving his award McDonald said, “it is the people—faculty, staff, administrators, and students—who have made Northern Essex a known and valued resource. I feel very fortunate and proud to have played a role in this journey for the last 45 years. I know NECC will continue to serve and prosper in the days to come.”