April 15, 2019
The University of Montana Western’s 2019 Commencement Ceremony, held on Saturday, May 11, will honor Susan Jones with the University’s Alumni Distinguished Service Award.
Jones graduated from Montana Western in 1975, with two B.S. Secondary Education degrees in art education and biology and a K-12 library endorsement, followed in 1984 by a master’s degree in education.
Her passion in life has been focused on lifelong learning with a special emphasis on continuing adult and senior education.
She started her career at Montana Western in 1978 as a research librarian and an assistant in the School of Outreach. In 1985, she became the Director of the School of Outreach until becoming the Associate Vice President of Program Development for North America of Elderhostel, Inc. (now named Road Scholar) in 1998, a role she would serve in for ten years. She received the President’s Employee Recognition award for her outstanding work in 1997.
Road Scholar is the world’s largest educational non-profit travel organization with a focus on creating experiential learning opportunities for older adults. According to its website, Road Scholar currently offers 5,500 learning adventures in 150 countries and all 50 states and serves more than 100,000 participants per year.
While working at Montana Western, Jones participated in many community leadership roles including serving on the Board of Directors for the Women’s Resource Center work program and the Beaverhead County Chamber of Commerce. She was also Chamber of Commerce President in 1995.
From 2011-2017, she served in various roles for the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education in Helena, Mont., including Senior Program Specialist, the Director of Two-Year Mission Integration and Special Projects Manager.
Her responsibilities included managing large projects, working with adult higher education programs, and building successful post-secondary education partnerships for the College!NOW grant and the two-year and community college education division.
“It is such a pleasure to honor Sue with the University of Montana Western Alumni Distinguished Service Award because she has spent her career impacting this university, this community and this state through her passion for lifelong learning. We could not be more pleased to present this award to Susan Seyler Jones,” said UMW Foundation Director, Roxanne Engellant.
The commencement ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. in the Straugh Gymnasium on the Montana Western campus.
For more information about Commencement, please contact the Montana Western Registrar’s Office by calling 406-683-7371.