Mary Furgol grew up in Fife, Scotland, the birthplace of Adam Smith and Andrew Carnegie, and came to the United States in 1987. SheI earned a PhD in history from the University of Edinburgh after completing her MA with first class honors there. Her PhD dissertation focused on problems of poor relief in newly industrializing societies and has sections on the roles of women in philanthropy and on the transatlantic exchange of ideas on poverty.
She has taught in the Master of Liberal Arts program for a number of years both in the classroom and online. Her courses include British Victorian Women, the Social History of Medicine and World War One: history, memory and commemoration. She has taught at American University and Mount Saint Mary’s University and till recently was a history professor at Montgomery College where she also directed the highly successful Montgomery Scholars Interdisciplinary Honors Program. In 2003 she received the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching Maryland Professor of the Year Award. She has also presented for the Smithsonian Campus on the Mall Program and the Johns Hopkins University Odyssey Program as well as leading several study trips to Cambridge University, Ireland, and her native Scotland.