Dr. Jean Minto, professor at the University for nearly 30 years, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on October 4, 2020.
Dr. Minto was born on July 25, 1954, in Middletown, NY. It was said that from an early age, she could most often be found with her nose in a book. To continue her love of literature, she received a degree in Bible and secondary English education from Cairn University, an MA from Arcadia University, and a Doctor of Letters from Drew University, where she received the Robert Chapman Prize for her dissertation on Irish history and culture.
Dr. Minto served in various capacities at the University since she first began teaching in 1991, but she often mentioned that she felt most at home whenever she was in the classroom. Since she taught courses in both literature and the liberal arts, most students who attended the University in her nearly 30-year long career at Cairn took courses with her. Alumni and current students spanning those three decades commonly shared how integral Dr. Minto was to both their success and enjoyment of their Cairn education.
In her most recent position as chair of the English department, Dr. Minto invested heavily in the development of her students, perhaps exemplified best by her role as advisor of English majors’ senior projects. There, she acted as a guide, motivator, and encourager to students as they finished their education and prepared for what came next after graduation. In her years as chair, she created a community among the English majors and other literature enthusiasts—a bond that was often formed over tea and scones. From encouraging conversations and advice to book swaps and reading recommendations, Dr. Minto’s legacy at the University cannot be underestimated.
“Jean was a dear friend, trusted colleague, and exemplary teacher,” said President Todd J. Williams. “She taught many of us who serve at the University presently. Her impact on Cairn was profound. Her love for the Lord and for the students was demonstrated in the way she practiced her craft as a teacher and in the interest she showed in us both in and out of the classroom. She will be greatly missed.”
Family and friends are invited to Dr. Minto’s viewings on Thursday, October 8 from 6–8 pm and again on Friday, October 9 from 11:30 am–12:30 pm at Grace Point Church. Her memorial service will also be held on Friday at Grace Point at 12:30 pm. The church is limited to 125 attendees (masks required), so individuals are encouraged to watch the live stream of her memorial service on Grace Point’s YouTube channel.
In March 2023, Pennsylvania lawmakers introduced the Compassionate Aid in Dying bill (HB543/SB816). The bill is modeled after Oregon’s Death with Dignity Act, which has largely set the framework, in