academic endowments

Four 2009-11 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors named

SMU's 2009-11 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching ProfessorsFour outstanding educators have been named 2009-11 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors by SMU’s Center for Teaching Excellence. This year’s honorees are Crista DeLuzio, History; Robert Howell, Philosophy; Thomas Knock, History; and Thomas Osang, Economics. All four honorees teach in Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.

The four new members of SMU’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers will join returning members Olga Colbert, Foreign Languages and Literatures (Spanish); Ian Harris, Statistical Science; Larry Ruben, Biological Sciences; and David Willis, Mechanical Engineering.

Each year since 2001, the Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor Awards recognize four 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 website. “They represent the highest achievement in reaching the goals of higher education.” The professorships are named for SMU Trustee Ruth Altshuler.

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 new Altshuler Professors under the link. Left, the new Altshuler Professors were honored by the SMU Board of Trustees during its May meeting (left to right): SMU President R. Gerald Turner, Thomas Knock, Thomas Osang, Crista DeLuzio, Robert Howell and Ruth Altshuler.

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Faculty bonuses arrive through Stella Porter Russell Fund

Eligible faculty members will receive a salary bonus of approximately $2,200 each in their Nov. 30, 2008 paychecks through projected available resources from the Lester A. and Stella Porter Russell Fund. The Office of the Provost has identified 651 faculty members as eligible according to the parameters set by Stella Porter Russell in her will.

The annual supplement remains the same as that for 2007, which was awarded to 629 faculty members. The net amounts received by individuals will vary based on each person’s employment tax withholdings.

Every year the amount of the supplement is based on the number of faculty who are eligible, the expected spending distribution from the endowment, and the effect of current investment market conditions on the endowment, says Liz Williams, who as SMU treasurer manages the University’s endowment and planned giving assets.

“As a result, there has been some variability from year to year in the distribution amount, but overall this special endowment fund has helped SMU remain competitive in the area of faculty compensation,” she adds.

In her will, Russell stipulated that SMU establish an endowment fund in memory of her late husband and herself, to be used to supplement SMU faculty salaries.

Full-time faculty, including those on paid leave, are eligible for Russell Fund bonuses, as well as visiting professors with 2-year contracts and professors on leave without pay for 1 semester. Eligibility for professors on leave without pay for 2 semesters and administrators is subject to decision by the appropriate dean.

By | 2008-11-21T11:47:35+00:00 November 21, 2008|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

Four named 2008-10 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors

SMU's 2008-10 Altshuler ProfessorsFour outstanding educators have been named 2008-10 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors by SMU’s Center for Teaching Excellence. This year’s honorees are Olga Colbert, Foreign Languages and Literatures; Ian Harris, Statistical Science; Larry Ruben, Biological Sciences; and David Willis, Mechanical Engineering.

The four new members will join four returning members of SMU’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers: Christine Buchanan, Biological Sciences; Mark Chancey, Religious Studies; John C. Holbert, Theology; and Bonnie Wheeler, English and Medieval Studies. Read more.

Left, the new Altshuler Professors were honored by the SMU Board of Trustees at its May meeting. Left to right: SMU Trustee Ruth Altshuler, Harris, Colbert, Ruben and Willis.

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Five Ford Research Fellows named for 2008

2008 Ford Research FellowsFive innovative SMU researchers have received the University’s 2008 Ford Research Fellowships. This year’s recipients are Rhonda Blair, Theatre; Marc Christensen, Electrical Engineering; Rajani Sudan, English; Kumar Venkataraman, Finance; and Steven Vik, Biological Sciences.

Established in 2002 through a $1 million pledge from Gerald Ford, chair of SMU’s Board of Trustees, the fellowships help the University retain and reward outstanding scholars. Each recipient receives a cash prize for research support during the year.

Read more about this year’s recipients. Right, the new Ford Fellows were honored by the SMU Board of Trustees at its May meeting. Left to right: SMU Trustee Gerald J. Ford and his wife, Kelli; Vik, Blair, Christensen, Sudan and Venkataraman.

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$1 million Tolleson gift to benefit Cox merit scholars

Debbie and John TollesonA $1 million gift from John C. and Debbie Tolleson (left) of Dallas will provide additional support for the Edwin L. Cox BBA Scholars Program in SMU’s Cox School of Business. The merit-based undergraduate scholarship program was named in fall 2007 in recognition of a $5 million challenge grant from Cox toward a goal of $10 million for endowment of the Scholars Program. The Tolleson gift supports that goal.

“Merit scholarships for outstanding students are one of SMU’s greatest priorities,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “By supporting the Cox BBA Scholars Program, John and Debbie Tolleson are helping us to attract additional top students who will benefit from our excellent programs and contribute to our rise in academic quality. We are grateful for the Tollesons’ generosity and foresight in making this gift.”

The BBA Scholars Program was established in 2002 to provide scholarships for highly qualified first-year students who are admitted directly into the Cox School of Business. About 100 students enter SMU as BBA Scholars each year. Selected from more than 500 candidates, those entering in fall 2007 represented 26 states and three countries and had an average SAT score of 1401.

Read more from SMU News.

$10 million Huffington gift will endow Department of Earth Sciences

Earth SciencesOne of SMU’s oldest and most distinguished academic departments has new resources to support the growing impact of its research and teaching, thanks to a gift of more than $10 million from the Honorable Roy M. Huffington of Houston. The gift endows the Department of Earth Sciences in SMU’s Dedman College, now renamed the Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences.

With this new gift, announced March 27, Huffington has given SMU over $20 million in the last two years and a total of more than $31 million over many years of support for the University. In fall 2006, he provided just over $10 million in endowments for faculty support and student scholarships at SMU. Huffington received his bachelor’s degree in geology from SMU.

“SMU’s research and teaching in the earth sciences is already internationally recognized, producing successful scientists who help us understand the history of our planet as well as the prospects for developing future energy resources,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Roy Huffington’s generosity will enable the Huffington Department of Earth Sciences to make an even greater impact on the challenges faced on a global level.”

Read more from SMU News.

Cox School offers tax concentration in graduate accounting program

With the aid of a $500,000 gift from the Ernst & Young Foundation, SMU’s Cox School of Business has created a tax concentration for the Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) program. The Ernst & Young gift will support the establishment of new graduate tax courses, as well as the Ernst & Young Tax Scholar and Ernst & Young Tax Mentor programs, which will provide scholarships and mentoring opportunities to full-time MSA students pursuing the tax concentration.

Students in the tax concentration will take the 16 required hours of accounting that all MSAs take (which includes four hours of taxation courses), along with four additional courses in tax accounting: Advanced Entities, Tax Research, International and Interstate Tax Accounting, and Accounting for Income Taxes. Successful completion of the new tax concentration will enable individuals to enter the accounting profession as highly trained tax professionals and increase their overall marketability.

Read more from SMU News.

By | 2008-02-29T09:55:43+00:00 February 29, 2008|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |

Faculty bonus arrives courtesy of Stella Porter Russell Fund

Eligible faculty members received a salary bonus of $2,200 each in their November paychecks, through projected available resources from the Lester A. and Stella Porter Russell Fund. The Office of the Provost has identified 629 faculty members as eligible according to the parameters set by Stella Porter Russell in her will. Read more.

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