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UC Alumna Named Ohio Professor of the Year

Date: Nov. 16, 2000
By: Dawn Fuller and Marianne Kunnen-Jones
Phone: (513) 556-1823
File photo by: Scott Barkley (courtesy of the Barkley family)
Archive: General News

Elizabeth ("Buffy") Bookser Barkley, a Mount St. Joseph educator who holds a doctorate in English from the University of Cincinnati, was honored this week as the Ohio Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). The U.S. Professors of the Year is the only national awards program to recognize innovative teaching by college and university professors.

Barkley photo

Barkley is an associate professor of English at the College of Mount St. Joseph. She also serves as chair of the college's Committee on Faculty Development, coordinator of the college's English program, and advisor to the campus student-run newspaper.

She has written articles for local and national publications as well as the books, Loving the Everyday: Meditations for Moms, and Woman to Woman: Seeing God in Daily Life. Barkley joined the faculty of Mount St. Joseph in 1977.

Barkley received her doctorate in English from the University of Cincinnati in 1998. Robert Arner, UC professor of English, was Barkley's dissertation adviser and says he suggested the topic of her dissertation.

I am simply not surprised (about the award), because she was always organized, energetic and enthusiastic. I am delighted. It couldn't happen to a nicer person or a better person. She was wonderful to work with," said Arner.

Barkley's dissertation focused on a collection of women's letters dating back to the 19th century. The correspondents had met at a religious revival meeting and their letters to each other shared their thoughts about religion, health, domesticity and other issues. The collection of letters is housed in UC's Archives and Rare Books Library.

Barkley credits Arner with motivating her to use technology to enhance her teaching. "Bob Arner got into this early on, which sounds strange for a 17th and 18th century Americanist, but he pointed out to me how wonderful technology can be. We can link to an image of the author, and even college kids like to see what these people looked like. When one of my classes was covering slave narratives, I found a site that had interviews of former slaves. We could click on the audio links and hear their oral history.

"I believe people mistakenly think that old history has no connection to technology. I use the Web a lot with my teaching."

UC English Professor Lucille Schultz served on Barkley's dissertation committee and says Barkley's latest honor is well deserved. "She took a class from me. She was a student that had six questions, all on the first day. And she was superb at relating to the other students, even though she was a veteran teacher of 20 years. She was able to be with them as a colleague and as a voice of experience."

"Her personal skills are just tremendous," Schultz continued. "She is a wonderful listener. What is so remarkable about Buffy is that she is one of those people that everybody likes. She is so bright, but her intellectual abilities don't get in the way of her being gracious and warm."

Four national winners and 47 state winners were selected from nearly 500 faculty members nominated by colleges and universities across the nation. Nominees were evaluated in four key areas: impact on and involvement with undergraduates; scholarly approach to teaching and learning; contributions to undergraduate education within the institution, community and profession; and support from colleagues and students.

Visit Barkely's personal page at the College of Mount St. Joseph


 
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