On the desk of Marquita Grenot-Scheyer sits an old black-and-white photo of the elementary students she tutored in the 1970s.
Back then, Grenot-Scheyer was a freshman at Cal State LA, trying very hard to reach students with disabilities: those with autism, severe mental retardation, and behavioral challenges. In the end, the students taught Grenot-Scheyer a lesson that became a central tenet of her career, one that a beloved professor later helped hone.
“They taught me what it means to be a teacher, i.e., believing every child can learn,” says Grenot-Scheyer. “It’s my responsibility to ensure that each and every student has the opportunity to learn.”
Today Grenot-Scheyer holds a Ph.D. in special education and is an author and leader in the field. In 2016, she was appointed assistant vice chancellor for Teacher Education and Public School Programs for the California State University Office of the Chancellor.
Fueled by gratitude and a desire to help others succeed as she has, Grenot-Scheyer and her husband, Kraig, have created the new Dr. Mary A. Falvey Leadership Development Fund. The gift honors Falvey, who is a professor emerita of special education at the University, a former dean of the Charter College of Education, and a national authority on inclusive education for students with and without disabilities.