College of Health Sciences and Human Services

Department of Social Work

In Remembrance of Terry Ellis - Posthumous Degree Awarded

Terry Ellis, a third-year MSW student, died peacefully the morning of April 21st following a year-long battle with cancer. She was originally slated to graduate in May 2017 but took incompletes in her final semester to pursue medical treatment. She leaves behind her husband Tim Flynn, her son Tadg Rowan Flynn (age 10), and her daughter Truly Rose Flynn (age 5). Her mother and three siblings also survive her. Terry was a trained organic farmer. Both before and during her enrollment in the MSW program, she was an active participant in the Wild Rose Women's Cooperative Farm, which enabled her to fulfill her passion for growing food. She held an MFA from the Portland Art Institute. She and Tim were also foster parents. Her classmates and faculty knew her as a likable, serious, and thoughtful student who demonstrated complete commitment to the core values of the social work profession. She was passionate about her education, but saw that appropriately as only the means to the larger goal of equipping herself to serve marginalized populations. She was especially interested in working with children. After working with a child at her field placement, she shared with a classmate that "a piece of my heart goes home with each one of these kids."