February 22, 2024

gloria quick headshotAs part of Columbia College’s ongoing effort to observe Black History Month, we intentionally highlight the Black leaders within our community so that we can witness and learn from their impact on the Columbia College Family.

Gloria Quick is a Columbia College graduate of the Class of 1969. In fact, she is the first Black graduate in Columbia College history. Gloria majored in what was then referred to as Speech Correction, but the academic community now addresses it as Speech-Language Pathology. Her time at Columbia College was certainly marked by the education she received, but more than that, Gloria shares that Columbia College is a place where she feels accepted, loved unconditionally, and always welcome. In short, Columbia College is home.

As an alumna, Gloria has been invited back to campus on multiple occasions: to serve on panels, for speaking engagements, Founders Day and Black History Month celebrations, and even as a personal guest of President and Mrs. Dozier during their first semester on campus. During her over 40-year career as a Speech-Language Pathologist, Gloria sought opportunities to work with children of all ages, ranging from preschool-aged to high school students and everything in between. Whenever a need for a community presented itself, Gloria used her time and talents to meet that need, often creating community-focused programs to serve the betterment of the whole child. Some of the programs she created include a teen/tot reading partnership for low-income communities, a preschool workbook program for parents to reinforce skills from the classroom at home, and a roadmap for academic success designed for high school students to improve their personal advocacy skills. Gloria’s perspective and career experiences since her graduation remain invaluable to Columbia College as we honor the institution of our past while pushing toward the institution we hope to be in the future.  

When asked what Black History Month means to her, Mrs. Quick shared, “Black History Month is a time to recognize and celebrate the many achievements of Blacks that were excluded from the history books. Growing up, I never learned about the achievements of Blacks. They weren’t in history books or talked about in high school or college. Unless your family talked about it or you heard it in church, Black history wasn’t something you learned. Now, because of initiatives like Black History Month, we know there are so many groups that have contributed to the success of our country: the Native Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanics, and yet their histories have been eliminated. Because of Black History Month and other months and initiatives dedicated to spreading awareness of these forgotten histories, our world is slowly learning the history that should have been taught all along.”

Gloria Quick has spent her life and career answering the call of service, meeting the many needs she observed as an educator, and changing the lives of many along the way. Columbia College is proud and honored to highlight the accomplishments of alumni like Gloria, who have gone out into the world and made it better for others. 

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