Dorothy Acklin Erskine

Honored by:Tom and Gary Erskine
Brick location:C:8  map

A 1935 home economics graduate, Dorothy Erskine was best known for the thirty years she served as Classification Officer for the College of Sciences and Humanities until her retirement in 1982. The death of Dorothy's husband Harold in 1952 left her with the challenge of raising two young boys by herself.

She met the challenge by joining Iowa State, initially working in the Junior College Division and rapidly moving into her position as Classification Officer. Back in the 1950's, equal pay for equal work had not become a concept, let alone a reality. Through dedication hard work and a genuine caring for students, Dorothy became recognized as one of the finest in her field. Under Dorothy's leadership, the Classification Office was responsible for assigning class schedules to students in the colleges. Until the latter years of her career, most of the assignments were done manually until computers began assisting with the process.

Dorothy had a real sensitivity to the personal problems which many students faced in the scheduling of their classes. She understood their many unique needs and her office made every effort to meet the individual scheduling requirements of each of the students. Thousands of Iowa State students remember the personal touch she provided. Dorothy was a strong supporter of Iowa State athletics and she had a special concern for Cyclone athletes.

She was a friend, listener and counselor to hundreds of them. Her work served as a model for the current academic counselors now serving the athletes. She showed a sincere concern for their personal concerns and needs and was the "mother away from home" for many. In acknowledgement for her compassionate service to Iowa State students in general and athletes in particular, the Athletic Department in 1984 named Dorothy "Cy's Favorite Alum," the first woman so designated in the thirty years the award had been given. In 1971, Dorothy was the first recipient of the Superior Service Award given to outstanding Iowa State staff. She also received an Alumni Service Award in 1989 after five years of service on the Alumni Association Honors and Awards Committee.

In addition to her work and support of Iowa State, Dorothy has served as both deacon and elder of Collegiate Presbyterian Church in Ames, Iowa.