News

Three faculty members honored with 2018 Tunks Distinguished University Citizen Awards

Three faculty members were honored with SMU’s 2018 Thomas W. Tunks Distinguished University Citizen Award at the Faculty Breakfast held Saturday, May 19 before Commencement. This year’s recipients are:

  • Alan Brown, Psychology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences
  • Linda Eads, Dedman School of Law
  • Pia Vogel, Biological Sciences, Dedman College of Humanities and Science

The award, given by the Office of the Provost, honors three faculty members each year for service and activities that benefit students and the University’s academic mission and “who have demonstrated outstanding citizenship through dedicated service to the University and its governance.”

Formerly the Distinguished University Citizen Award, the honor was renamed in 2014 for Tunks, a professor of music education, former associate provost and founding Faculty-in-Residence in the University’s Residential Commons.

Explore ‘Hidden Scripts’ with the Cultural Intelligence Initiative at SMU

The Cultural Intelligence Initiative at SMU (CIQ@SMU) is offering faculty, staff and students opportunities this summer to examine the cultural identities and languages that shape interactions.

CIQ@SMU will present “Hidden Scripts,” a seminar that explores how geographical, age, gender, political, economic, racial and sexual identities affect how individuals collaborate with others and make decisions. The seminar is from 10 a.m. to noon June 21, July 18 and August 31 in Umphrey Lee Center.

Campus community members may register online for the June 21, July 18 or August 31 seminar here.

“Faculty, staff and students have provided input and inspiration that have shaped ‘Hidden Scripts’ since we piloted the seminar earlier this spring,” says Maria Dixon Hall, senior advisor to the Provost for cultural intelligence and associate professor of corporate communication and public affairs in Meadows School of the Arts. “Participants in ‘Hidden Scripts’ will discuss concepts including cultural identities and affinities, and how these narratives can support or hinder our abilities to work and learn with one another.”

> Learn more about CIQ@SMU: smu.edu/ciq

Four outstanding SMU scholars named 2018 Ford Research Fellows

Four SMU professors received 2018 Ford Research Fellowships during the University’s Board of Trustees Meeting in May. Pictured left to right: SMU President R. Gerald Turner, Adam Herring, Klaus Desmet, Elfi Kraka, MinJun Kim, and SMU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven C. Currall. Photo credit: SMU | Allison Slomowitz

Four distinguished SMU professors were honored for their scholarship as 2018 Ford Research Fellows. The awards were presented during the Board of Trustees meeting Thursday, May 8.

This year’s recipients are Klaus Desmet, Economics, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences; Adam Herring, Art History, Meadows School of the Arts; MinJun Kim, Mechanical Engineering, Lyle School of Engineering; and Elfi Kraka, Chemistry, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.

Klaus Desmet is the Ruth and Kenneth Altshuler Centennial Interdisciplinary Professor and professor of economics in Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences. His research focuses on international trade, regional and urban economics, macroeconomics, and political economy. In April, he was appointed as a research associate in the International Trade & Investment and Political Economy program of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) – a prestigious national think tank that brings together researchers in economic policy and empirical economic analysis.

Adam Herring is the Emily Rich Summers Endowed Professor, chair and director of graduate studies in the Division of Art History, Meadows School of the Arts. Dr. Herring is a specialist in the art of the pre-Columbian Americas, with research interests that include visual theory and semiotics, anthropological and materialist critique of visual experience, and the history of the discipline. A 2017 Guggenheim Fellow, Dr. Herring has also received fellowships from Dumbarton Oaks, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and The Huntington Library.

MinJun Kim is the Robert C. Womack Chair in Mechanical Engineering in Lyle School of Engineering. He works in three unified subject areas: micro- and nanorobotics, single-cell and single-molecule biophysics, and transport phenomena. His research applies to a range of nano- and microfabrication techniques that are capable of producing small-scale functional materials and devices. These “microbots” create the possibility of exploring biology where fundamental processes take place, such as epigenetic and genetic control of single cells.

Elfi Kraka is professor and chair in the Department of Chemistry, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, and an expert in computational chemistry, quantum mechanics, and drug discovery. As head of SMU’s Computational and Theoretical Chemistry (CATCO) Lab, she researches computer-assisted drug design as a tool for reducing the time needed to develop new pharmaceuticals. She also investigates and develops new quantum chemical methods, the mechanism of chemical reactions with the Unified Reaction Valley Approach (URVA), and the structure and stability of van der Waals complexes.

Established in 2002 through a $1 million pledge from trustee Gerald J. Ford, the Ford Research Fellowships help SMU retain and reward outstanding scholars. Each recipient receives a cash prize for research support during the year.

Nineteen SMU faculty members retire with emeritus status in 2017-18

Nineteen distinguished faculty members with a combined total of nearly 620 years of SMU service retired with emeritus status in the 2017-18 academic year.

The professors, and their dates of service:

Cox School of Business

  • William B. Brueggeman, Professor Emeritus, Real Estate, Risk Management and Business Law, 1978-2018
  • James C. Collins Jr., Professor Emeritus, Information Technology and Operations Management, 1964-2017
  • Ellen F. Jackofsky, Associate Professor Emerita, Management and Organizations, 1982-2018
  • Robert W. Rasberry, Assistant Professor Emeritus, Management and Organizations, 1974-2018
  • James Smith, Professor Emeritus, Finance, 1995-2018
  • Rex Thompson, Professor Emeritus, Finance, 1988-2018

Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences

  • Alan S. Brown, Professor Emeritus, Psychology, 1974-2018
  • Louis L. Jacobs, Professor Emeritus, Paleontology, 1983-2018
  • Francisco Morán, Professor Emeritus, World Languages and Literatures (Spanish), 2003-2018
  • Wayne A. Woodward, Professor Emeritus, Statistical Science, 1981-2017

Dedman School of Law

  • Maureen N. Armour, Associate Professor Emerita, Law, 1989-2018
  • William J. Bridge, Associate Professor Emeritus, Law, 1977-2018
  • Linda S. Eads, Associate Professor Emerita, Law, 1986-2018
  • Victoria Palacios, Associate Professor Emerita, Law, 1991-2018

Lyle School of Engineering

  • William Milton (Milt) Gosney Jr., Professor Emeritus, Electrical Engineering, 1986-2017
  • David W. Matula, Professor Emeritus, Computer Science and Engineering, 1974-2017

Meadows School of the Arts

  • Daniel (Danny) Buraczeski, Professor Emeritus, Dance, 2006-2018
  • Mary Vernon, Professor Emerita, Art, 1987-2018

Perkins School of Theology

  • William B. Lawrence, Professor Emeritus, American Church History, 2002-2018

Holly Jeffcoat named dean of SMU Libraries

Holly Jeffcoat

University of Connecticut Associate Dean of Libraries Holly Jeffcoat, a leader in the use of technology in instruction and library services, has been selected as the next dean of SMU Libraries. She will assume her new duties Wednesday, August 1, 2018.

“Holly Jeffcoat has deep leadership skills, as well as broad administrative experience in the library system of a highly ranked research institution,” said SMU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven C. Currall. “She will lead SMU Libraries in forging a collective vision in line with SMU’s goals for even greater academic quality.”

SMU President R. Gerald Turner lauded Jeffcoat’s strategic vision.

“Holly is wonderfully forward-thinking in her understanding of the role of technology in libraries now and in the future,” Turner said.

As associate dean of UConn Library, Jeffcoat leads core library operations that include access services, administration, marketing, development, facilities, finance, human resources, information technology and strategic planning. She oversees a $22 million budget, and leads the Library’s five-year, $20 million master plan renovation effort.

She is a key contributor to One UConn Library, an endeavor that ultimately will align systems across all UConn libraries. She also serves as interim leader of the strategic library areas of research, teaching, service and outreach. Previously at UConn, she served as the interim vice provost (the head UConn librarian), the assistant vice provost, and as the associate university librarian of planning, finance and assessment.

“It is an honor and privilege to join the SMU community as the new dean of SMU Libraries,” Jeffcoat said. “This is an exciting time of change and growth in academic research libraries and at SMU. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to collaborate with world-changing faculty, students, staff, and the broader SMU community to create a shared 21st-century vision for SMU Libraries built upon the existing strengths of dedicated library professionals, outstanding special collections, and inspiring facilities.”

Prior to an international search for a new dean, Currall convened a task force to review existing university library organizational structures and processes, and to make recommendations for a new structure favorable to coordination among the libraries, and conducive to future strategic planning. A new unified organization model will take effect when Jeffcoat begins her new post.

As SMU Libraries dean, Jeffcoat will oversee DeGolyer Library, SMU’s principal repository for special collections in the humanities, the history of business, science and technology; Fondren Library Center, including the Norwick Center for Digital Services; the Hamon Arts Library; Bridwell Library, which supports theological education and scholarship; the Business Library; and human resources needs for the libraries. She will serve as ex officio member of the SMU Libraries Executive Board and the Friends of the SMU Libraries.

“Holly understands modern research libraries from the ground up and across all disciplines,” said Thomas DiPiero, dean of SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, who chaired the 15-member search committee. “Her terrific strategic planning experience will help her lead collaborations across SMU Libraries.”

Prior to UConn, Jeffcoat held positions at the University of New Mexico College of University Libraries and Learning Sciences as well as the UNM Health Sciences Library and Informatics Center. Her library leadership career began in Galápagos, Ecuador, as the director of the Charles Darwin Research Station. Jeffcoat has published and presented on translational science support, use of virtual reality in education, collection development in health sciences, and numerous scholarly communication topics.

Jeffcoat is a founding creator of BLC Leads, a Boston-based leadership program for mid-career librarians, and serves as a program mentor. She is a 2018-19 fellow in the prestigious Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Library Leadership Fellows program.

She earned B.A. degree in psychology from Greensboro College, where she minored in sociology and French. She earned an M.S. degree in sociology from Utah State University, and an M.A. degree in library and information sciences from the University of Arizona.

Currall thanked Elizabeth Killingsworth, who has served as interim dean since July 2017, for her leadership. “Elizabeth guided us through this period of transition extremely well,” he said. “She’s a wonderful asset to SMU Libraries and the University.”

SMU remembers benefactor and alumna Patsy Pinson Hutchison ’54

Patsy Pinson Hutchison '54 with Bill Hutchison

SMU alumna Patsy Pinson Hutchison ’54, a devoted University supporter, passed away on May 15, 2018. Along with her husband and fellow alumnus, Bill, the Hutchisons have long been familiar figures at the SMU-in-Taos Cultural Institute at SMU’s campus in Taos, New Mexico, supporting The Chapel at Fort Burgwin, which was dedicated in 2014.

“Patsy Hutchison’s love for SMU was deep and constant,” SMU President R. Gerald Turner said. “Our University has benefited from the Hutchisons’ enduring commitment to education and enrichment and a special affinity for our Taos campus. Gail and I, along with all those who attend the Cultural institute at SMU-in-Taos each summer, will truly miss her warm, friendly presence each year.”

Mrs. Hutchison earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education from SMU and was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority. She served as vice president of the SMU Mother’s Club and on the reunion committee for her 50th reunion year class in 2004.

A noted civic and community volunteer in Santa Fe, where the Hutchisons reside, she served on the boards of Kitchen Angels – an organization that provides meals for the homebound – and the New Mexico Governor’s Mansion Foundation. She also was involved with the Santa Fe Garden Club. While the Hutchisons lived in Dallas, she was a member of the Junior League of Dallas.

Mr. Hutchison ’54 is an SMU Trustee Emeritus, serving on its board from 1981-1987. In addition to The Chapel at Fort Burgwin, the Hutchisons’ generous support includes the Ima Leete Hutchison Concert series at SMU-in-Taos. They supported many other initiatives at SMU, creating endowed chairs, scholarships and program funds such as the Ima Leete Hutchison Endowment in the Meadows School of the Arts.

“Patsy exuded such grace and elegance, yet she always made everyone feel like a good friend. She has left a lasting mark on SMU, an institution she loved very much,” said Brad Cheves, SMU vice president for development and external affairs. “The Hutchisons’ rich SMU legacy is part of the University fabric extending over four generations. We will forever be grateful for their support and service.”

Tune In: Fun rules at the 2018 SMU President’s Picnic

Good weather and plenty of Mustang spirit came together on Tuesday, May 22 as the SMU staff – and President R. Gerald Turner – gathered on the Clements Hall South Lawn. The 2018 President’s Picnic featured cookout food and lighter fare, plus fresh popcorn and cookies for snacking. Lawn games, Flat Peruna adventures, tabling, a pop-up library, and even some salsa dancing completed the recipe for fun. The annual event is organized by the SMU Staff Association.

Enjoy this selection of photos from the 2018 SMU President’s Picnic. camera

23 SMU professors receive tenure, promotions for 2018-19 academic year

Twenty-three exemplary SMU faculty members will begin the 2018-19 academic year newly tenured as associate professor or promoted to full professor.

The following individuals have received tenure or promotion effective Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018:

Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development

Recommended for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor:

  • Doris Baker, Teaching and Learning
  • Candace Walkington, Teaching and Learning

Cox School of Business

Recommended for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor:

  • Stacey Jacobsen, Finance

Recommended for tenure (associate professorship previously awarded):

  • Chotibhak Jotikasthira, Finance

Recommended for promotion to Full Professor:

  • Edward Fox, Marketing

Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences

Recommended for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor:

  • Andrea Barreiro, Mathematics
  • Michael Chmielewski, Psychology
  • Maxime Foerster, World Languages and Literatures (French)
  • Jo Guldi, History
  • Jill Kelly, History
  • James Lake, Economics
  • Alexander Lippert, Chemistry
  • Omar Ozak, Economics
  • Danila Serra, Economics

Recommended for promotion to Full Professor:

  • Jeffrey Engel, History
  • Kenneth Hamilton, History
  • Luigi Manzetti, Political Science
  • Alicia Meuret, Psychology

Dedman School of Law

Recommended for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor:

  • James Coleman, Law (energy law)

Lyle School of Engineering

Recommended for promotion to Full Professor:

  • Khaled Abdelghany, Civil and Environmental Engineering

Meadows School of the Arts

Recommended for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor:

  • Sidharth Muralidharan, Advertising

Perkins School of Theology

Recommended for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor:

  • James Kang Hoon Lee, History of Early Christianity

Recommended for promotion to Full Professor:

  • Roy Heller, Old Testament
By | 2018-05-23T16:58:21+00:00 May 23, 2018|Categories: For the Record, News|Tags: , |

Four outstanding educators named 2018-20 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors

Four top teachers have been named SMU’s 2018-20 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors, as announced by the University’s Center for Teaching Excellence during the Board of Trustees meeting Thursday, May 3, 2018.

This year’s honorees are Maribeth Kuenzi, Management, Cox School of Business; Owen Lynch, Corporate Communication and Public Affairs, Meadows School of the Arts; Meghan Ryan, Torts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Dedman School of Law; and Brandilyn Stigler, Mathematics, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.

The new members of SMU’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers will join active returning members W. Keith Robinson, Tsai Center for Law, Science and Innovation, Dedman School of Law; Stephen Sekula, Physics, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences; Kumar Venkataraman, Finance, Cox School of Business; and Kathleen Wellman, History, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.

Each year since 2001, the Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor Awards, named for the late Ruth Collins Sharp Altshuler ’48, recognize SMU faculty members for their commitment to and achievements in fostering student learning.

“These are faculty whose concerns for higher education go beyond classroom boundaries and often the boundaries of their own discipline,” according to the CTE. “They represent the highest achievement in reaching the goals of higher education.”

Each recipient receives a $10,000 award and membership in SMU’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers for the two years of their appointment as Altshuler Professors. Members participate actively with other members of the Academy to address issues in classroom teaching.

> Read more about the 2018-20 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors at the SMU CTE homepage

New center in SMU’s Dedman School of Law will equip legal and business leaders for a changing world

Umphrey Lee Cenotaph, Dedman School of Law quad, SMUCombined gifts of $4 million will create a new center in SMU’s Dedman School of Law to train the next generation of prominent legal and business leaders and influence national conversations surrounding business and corporate law. The Robert B. Rowling Center for Business Law and Leadership is being named in honor of Dallas businessman Robert B. Rowling, owner and Chairman of TRT Holdings, Inc., which is the holding company for the Omni Hotels and Resorts chain as well as Gold’s Gym International. Rowling received an undergraduate degree in business before graduating from Dedman Law in 1979.

The center will be named for Rowling at the request of an anonymous donor who made the lead gift. The donor asked Mr. Rowling the favor of sharing his name with the new center to reflect that Mr. Rowling exemplifies the type of business achievement, community engagement and civic contribution that future participants in the center’s programs should strive to emulate.

“Bob Rowling is the perfect example of the combined skills that will be the focus of the new center,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Today’s law students will be navigating careers that we cannot even imagine at the moment. They need training in ethical leadership, business analytics and entrepreneurship to develop the skills they will need to be successful. The Rowling Center has a role to play in shaping the future of business and corporate law.”

The Rowling Center will enrich the School’s existing curriculum, and include new leadership training to highlight professionalism and “soft skills,” as well as empirical training to teach core business skills. The program will build on the legal and business acumen centered in Dallas, collaborating with SMU’s Cox School of Business to provide an interdisciplinary approach. The center also will enhance Dedman Law’s mentoring program and provide new opportunities for students to connect with SMU’s extensive network of highly successful alumni and supporters.

In addition to expanded course offerings for J.D. students, the J.D./M.B.A. degree programs will be closely connected with the Rowling Center and its broader activities. Both the traditional four-year and the recently launched three-year accelerated J.D./M.B.A. degree programs are attracting top students with exceptional promise and strong credentials.

“I am honored to have my name associated with this center for several reasons,” Rowling said. “Dedman Law is my alma mater, of course, and I know from personal experience that a law degree is very useful in business. The center’s emphasis on business law and leadership will train law students in critical areas of business and position them well for future career success.“

A gift of $3 million from an anonymous donor, in addition to $1 million from the Dedman Foundation, will launch the center in fall 2018.

“This is great philanthropic synergy,” said Brad Cheves, SMU Vice President for Development and External Affairs. “We had a very generous donor who wanted to support an important initiative at Dedman Law and, at the same time, honor Robert Rowling, a Dedman Law alumnus who epitomizes the type of work on which this center will focus. We are delighted to see this idea come to fruition.”

The center will focus on two areas:

  • Training through an interdisciplinary program that includes new and innovative courses and extracurricular offerings, and
  • National conversations related to business and corporate law topics through programming, faculty research and partnerships.

“The center will capitalize on the Dedman School of Law’s global reputation for producing graduates who work at the interface of law and business,” said Steven C. Currall, SMU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “The center will also build upon innovative partnerships with SMU’s Cox School of Business and with the George W. Bush Presidential Center, which is located on our campus.”

“The Rowling center for Business Law and Leadership is an extraordinarily good fit for us, and a natural progression for Dedman Law,” said Jennifer Collins, Judge James Noel Dean of Dedman School of Law. “This Center will enhance the education we provide to our students by ensuring that graduates have the commitment to ethical leadership, entrepreneurial spirit, and business acumen they need to navigate the rapidly evolving employment landscape. It also will position the law school as a thought leader on questions related to corporate law and leadership and provide us with new opportunities to engage our alumni and the broader legal and business community. We are profoundly grateful to our lead donor, to the Dedman family, and of course to Mr. Rowling for helping us transform our vision of a business law center into a reality.”

Collins said the search would now begin for a center director with the practical experience and professional connections to make the Rowling Center immediately impactful. In addition to hosting seminars, conferences and symposia aimed at stimulating new developments in business and corporate law and policy, the center will house and coordinate established programming such as Dedman Law’s Corporate Counsel Symposium, Corporate Counsel Externship program and Corporate Directors’ Institute.

> Read the full story from SMU News

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