College of Education & Human Services

Arlington and Arlene Seymour

The Seymours

Arlington (Arlie) and Arlene Seymou r met in California in the early 1960s where they both were teaching. Arlie had graduated from WIU in 1953 and taught high school in Springfield, Illinois before heading to California in 1962. Arlene graduated from Michigan State, teaching in that state before moving to California in 1964.

There they met, married and spent most of their careers in the San Jose Unified School District. The Seymours retired in 1993, with a combined 69 years of teaching spread over five decades.

The Seymours' commitment to WIU spans many years, including a $1 million planned gift they established in 1997 for the Arlington and Arlene Seymour Teacher Education Endowment to provide scholarships for students pursuing careers in teaching. 

"We felt that Western provided a personal association for what we wanted to do with our estate for the immediate and long-term  future," said Arlie, when announcing the 1997 gift. "On visits to the campus and having our residence in Macomb from 2004 through 2008 reinforced our confidence in having made that choice."

"We both worked our way through college, with modest help from our parents. This was true of the majority of college people of our generation, the 'Depression Babies’. Need was a criteria for all of us," he added. "We have seen so many students in education fall through the cracks, and we wanted to help them."