Richard E. Wylie, who graduated from Plymouth Teachers College (N.H.), was honored by his alma mater at Plymouth State University commencement exercises May 22, when he was presented an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree. Wylie is an active member of the Plymouth State University Alumni Association and a consultant to the PSU President’s Council.
The citation accompanying his degree, which was read by University President Donald P. Wharton, begins:
“Richard E. Wylie, Plymouth State University is privileged to honor you today. We are indebted to you as an outstanding leader in education, where your contributions are many.”
Richard Wylie graduated from Plymouth Teachers College with a degree in elementary education in 1963. After graduation, he taught sixth grade in Gloucester, Mass. He earned M.Ed. and Ed.D. degrees at Boston University and taught at the University of Connecticut, Temple University in Pennsylvania, and the University of Colorado at Denver, before returning to New England as vice president for graduate programs at Lesley College in Cambridge, Mass.
Today he is president of Endicott College in Beverly, Mass. When Wylie became president, Endicott was struggling to survive as a two-year women’s college with 500 students. Over the ensuing 15 years, he led a team of faculty and administrators to transform Endicott into a four-year co-educational school with undergraduate, graduate and professional studies students. Wylie oversaw the building of a business conference center, an athletics center and an expanded college library; he established a mandatory internship program and opened campuses in Madrid, Mexico City and Switzerland.
Wylie’s other contributions to the field of education are numerous. He has published more than 25 professional monographs and books, and through the U.S. State Department’s office of Overseas Schools, he has worked to provide children in poorer countries access to education, heading projects in Ethiopia, Brazil and Portugal, among others.
He has been president of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and served on the boards of directors of the Beverly Co-operative Bank, Beverly School for the Deaf, The North Shore Music Theater and the North Shore Chamber of Commerce. He also served as Trustee Chair of the Urban College of Boston and was a consultant for Action for Boston Community Development.