Dr. Barbara Mathews Simmons was one of the top ten graduates at Paris Junior College commencement exercises in 1957. She continued her education at Texas Woman’s University, earning her Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education and
English in 1958. She earned a master’s degree in elementary education with a minor in English, and her doctorate in elementary education with a minor in early childhood education from Texas Tech University in 1967, and 1973, respectively. Beginning her professional career in 1958, Dr. Simmons taught in Lubbock and Albuquerque public schools until she joined the faculty as an adjunct assistant professor at Texas Tech University in 1969. She was a lecturer and graduate student until she earned her doctorate in 1973, at which time she became an assistant professor. She was named Associate Professor and Area Chairperson of the Early Childhood/Elementary Education at Texas Tech in 1977, a position she held until becoming Associate Dean of the Graduate School and Professor, Early Childhood/Elementary Education in 1982. Dr. Simmons moved to Las Cruces, NM in 1985 to become Dean of the College of Education, at New Mexico State University. She was one of the first women deans in the country. She held that position until 1997.
Dr. Simmons has been a speaker, panelist and consultant in over 150 education settings. Her publications include four books, more than 70 journal articles, and other items such as computer software and professional photographs. Dr. Simmons has been honored by the Governor as New
Mexico’s “Outstanding Woman”, and by Texas Tech University as a “Distinguished Alumna.” She and her husband, Douglas Rains, continue to support scholarships for College of Education students.
Financial Need: Required
Class Level: JR. SR.
Required Minimum GPA: 3.0
Required Major: ECED