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At Northwest Nazarene University’s 107th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 5, 2023, Reverend Mary Curran received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa.

Headshot of Mary CurranFaculty emerita Mary Curran began her teaching career at Northwest Nazarene University in 1990. Curran earned an associate degree from Antelope Valley Junior College in 1966, a bachelor’s degree from Point Loma Nazarene University in 1974, a Master of Divinity from Nazarene Theological Seminary in 1980 and a Master of Social Work from Howard University in 1984. Curran also earned certification in Secondary Education and Adult Education from the University of Idaho. She was ordained as an Elder in the Church of the Nazarene in 1985.

Prior to joining NNU, Rev. Curran held leadership positions as Director of Halfway Women’s House in Portland, Oregon, and as Associate Pastor for the Community of Hope, which served low-income families in Washington, D.C. Curran is credited with the development and implementation of the MSW program at NNU, curriculum still being used today, and has served as a member of the Idaho Social Work Licensing Board for 13 years.

“She has given her all to NNU through the investment of time, knowledge and skills,” said a former student. “There are some students who would have given up without Mary’s encouragement and aid in problem-solving.”