Provost Paul Ludden presented several awards to remarkable professors during the first Faulty Senate meeting of 2015 Jan. 21. President R. Gerald Turner, Faculty Senate President Jody Magliolo and Chaplain Steve Rankin were also in attendance.
Three new University Distinguished Professors were announced. Randall Griffin, professor of Art History in the Meadows School of the Arts; Suku Nair, chair of Computer Science and Engineering in the Lyle School of Engineering; and Santanu Roy, chair of Economics in the Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.
These faculty members were all nominated by their respective deans and recommended for appointment by a selection committee, which includes current endowed chairs and University Distinguished Professors. These recommendations are then approved by the Provost. Only 10 University Distinguished Professors are allowed on campus at one point in time.
Ludden also presented a pre-tenure and a tenured professor with honors. Assistant Professor Blake Hackler, from the Meadows Theatre division, received the 2013-14 Golden Mustang Award. Associate Professor of Law Meghan Ryan received the 2013-14 President’s Associates Award. Both awards recognize the advancement of teaching and learning in a faculty member.
Lastly, two Provost’s Teaching Recognition Awards were delivered. This award honors full-time non-tenure-track faculty that strive toward excellence and are dedicated to teaching and learning. Andrea Adams, professor of Chemistry, and Debra Branch, senior lecturer and advisor for Sociology, were both recipients.
Ludden also discussed the goals laid out in the Centennial Strategic Plan, which will come to a close this year. The Provost was very pleased with the progress the faculty has made toward these goals, and is looking forward to the completion of the plan.
Some of these goals include increasing diversity of faculty, staff and students, supporting for student-althetes and international students, designing and implementing the new University Curriculum, and integrating the Residential Commons program into university life.
Ludden said that he cannot think of a single goal that SMU has not made significant progress toward completion. Several of them have already been reached.
Magliolo, Faculty Senate president, recapped the activities of last fall and laid out plans for this spring. The Senate plans to continue to further the work of the Operational Excellence for the Second Century project (OE2C).
The Senate discussed the Organization Design Initiative last semester. This Initiative resulted in a staffing reduction, as The Daily Camps reported. Procurement, Finance and IT initiatives are also in their opening stages under the OE2C.
The Senate also plans to continue engagement with the University Curriculum and may look into how to sell the newer curriculum to prospective students.
Finally, the Faculty Senate announced it will continue to support the University’s agenda regarding Title IX and sexual misconduct on campus. The Senate will support the University’s efforts and may discuss the possibility of writing suggested language about this issue to include in future syllabi.