Katy Greenwood Joins Esteemed Ranks of Professors Emeriti


After a 34-year career of accomplishments at the University of Houston, Dr. Katy Brown Greenwood has joined the distinguished ranks among University of Houston retired emeriti professors.  

Dr. Greenwood received her doctorate in career and technology education from the University of Minnesota in 1978. Her career began as an assistant professor and coordinator of the Graduate Career and Technology Education at Texas A&M University for five years. The University of Houston has been home to Dr. Greenwood since 1984 when she joined as an associate professor and director of the Center of Applied Technology.

Dr. Greenwood’s workforce development and technical career preparation research allowed her to attract funded projects from multiple state and local agencies, assisting dislocated employees in finding meaningful work in various industry sectors. Her work was especially relevant during the 1980s oil bust, when Houston lost more than 200,000 jobs. Dr. Greenwood’s funded workshops helped elevate the University of Houston as a source of educational opportunities for the displaced employees. Her initiatives demonstrate the cross-sectional application of her work and the various funding agencies that supported her research.  She later sought funding to improve academic career preparation courses offered at the University of Houston and completed broader work focused on adult education across the State of Texas. 

Dr. Greenwood’s scholarly publications and conference presentations also focused on the vital resources necessary for individuals to find meaningful work. Her research appears in peer-reviewed journals such as Vocational Education Journal and in numerous conference proceedings. She co-authored a textbook, Human Ecosystems and Technological Changes (seventh edition, 2017), a requirement for a writing in the disciplines course, Human Ecosystems and Technological Change, for which she taught multiple sections.

Dr. Greenwood was instrumental in creating the first College of Technology training and development (now human resource development) courses. Often, the most popular course, Introduction to Career Development and Planning, would have over 150 students enrolled each semester with many from diverse majors.

In addition to attracting external funding, significant research and excellence in teaching, she is recognized widely for contributing steady and important service to the College and to the University. Dr. Greenwood assumed many advisory and leadership roles throughout the years. Her most notable work was as a Faculty Senator, a role in which she served honorably for 18 years. A true advocate for shared governance, Dr. Greenwood became notorious for her encyclopedic knowledge of the University of Houston Faculty Handbook, as she participated in iterative reviews and revisions of many other policies that governed faculty performance, promotion and tenure.   

“Dr. Greenwood has been a helpful barometer for making departmental decisions by offering both a short and long-term perspective about how an issue might influence the faculty. It was remarkable how she could restate any policy or process noted in the University Handbook, Undoubtedly, her astute knowledge of faculty policies has kept our administration within the boundaries of what is legal, just, and fair when dealing with faculty concerns, said Dr. Holly Hutchins,” professor and interim chair of the Human Development and Consumer Sciences Department.