Dean Diane Zosky delivered the 2021 College of Arts and Sciences Spring Address on Tuesday, April 27. She noted that because the college provides the majority of general education courses, College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) contributes to the education of a majority of students who graduate from Illinois State, regardless of their degree or major. Nearly one-third of graduates are aligned with a major in the College of Arts and Sciences. CAS produces 50 percent of the credit hours in the University.
“The strength of the College of Arts and Sciences is the foundation for the strength of the entire university,” Zosky said.
Zosky also observed that as the decline of traditional college-aged students looms, in order for the University to remain strong and stable Provost and Vice President Dr. Aondover Tarhule has put forward a plan with five pillars for new opportunities for the University. These include developing new programs and majors to attract students Illinois State currently does not attract, a renewed commitment to internationalization, expansion of innovative graduate programs, and expansion of online/distance education programs.
During her address, Zosky paid tribute to eight respected and admired colleagues who passed away during the last year: Lauren Brown and David Weber, School of Biological Sciences; Patty Foltz, Department of Psychology; Isabel Green, Department of Chemistry; Neil Skaggs, Department of Economics; E. Joan Miller and Henry Zintambila, Department of Geography, Geology, and the Environment; and Diane Urey, Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. They will be missed.
During the address, Dr. Joe Blaney announced this year’s college awards. Fifteen individuals were honored for their accomplishments this year. Rachel Sabella, a senior majoring in anthropology, is the recipient of the 2020-2021 Grabill-Homan Peace Prize. It is presented annually to a student minoring in peace studies. Drake Zimmerman is the winner of the 2020-2021 Grabill-Homan Community Peace Prize in recognition of his extensive record of community service locally and globally.
Nine faculty members were acknowledged by the college for their extraordinary accomplishments in teaching, research, and service. Each year one faculty member is selected from each of the college’s three divisions—the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences and mathematics—for recognition.
Recognized for Outstanding College Service were Kyle Ciani, Department of History; Mark E. Swerdlik, Department of Psychology; and Eric Peterson, Department of Geography, Geology, and the Environment.
Honored for Outstanding College Teaching were Sarah Hochstetler, Department of English; Matthew Hesson-McInnis, Department of Psychology; and Andy Mitchell, Department of Chemistry.
Winners of the Outstanding College Researcher Award were Touré F. Reed, Department of History; Kathryn E. Sampeck, Department of Sociology and Anthropology; and Wolfgang Stein, School of Biological Sciences.
Recognized for Outstanding College Service were Kyle Ciani, Department of History; Mark E. Swerdlik, Department of Psychology; and Eric W. Peterson, Department of Geography, Geology, and the Environment.
Blaney also announced the 2020-2021 and the 2021-2022 Kenneth A. and Mary Ann Shaw Teaching Fellowships, which were established by the Shaws to recognize teaching excellence and to improve the teaching and learning environment in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University.
The recipients of the 2020-2021 fellowships are Brent Simonds, School of Communication, and Susan Sprecher, Department of Sociology and Anthropology.
The recipients of the 2021-2022 fellowships are Joe Casto, School of Biological Sciences, and Kathryn Jasper, Department of History. The College congratulates all of its award winners!
The 2021 CAS Spring Dean’s Address and Awards Ceremony may be viewed by visiting the College of Arts and Sciences website at www.cas.illinoisstate.edu.