Dr. Tanner Babb, associate professor of psychology, Dr. Timothy Smith, professor of non-Western history, and Barb Michel, assistant professor of art, were promoted after the board meeting on Jan. 26.
Qualified faculty members are encouraged to apply for a promotion every year. The applicants are then selected after undergoing a lengthy process.
Applications go through Faculty Appointments and the Tenure Committee for the first approval, then those recommendations move on to the president and the vice president for academic affairs. Once approved by all required parties, the board of trustees make the final decision.
“This year, three applied and three were accepted,” Mike Wanous, vice president of academic affairs and dean of the faculty, said, “but it’s not always the case. It’s not a guarantee.”
Babb was promoted to associate professor of psychology. Babb earned his degree in psychology from the university and his master’s degree in education with an emphasis on marriage at Indiana University. Babb is also a licensed marriage and family therapy associate.
“Not only is he an outstanding teacher, but he also has done huge service to the university,” Wanous said. “He’s served as the chair of the department at an early stage in his career. He’s had lots of advisees, and not only is he an incredible teacher, but he’s also just a really great leader at the university.”
Babb says he is honored to be a part of the university, and that he works hard to provide students with a “great learning experience and invest in their lives.”
“The promotion to associate professor is a recognition and title that confirms the work I have been doing,” Babb said. “I love what I do, and I don’t do it for the titles and recognition, but it is good to know that the university appreciates the work I do all the same.”
Michel was promoted to associate professor of art. Michel graduated from Purdue University, earning her degree in commercial advertising and art education. She received her master’s degree in education from Indiana University.
“Barb Michel does a great job with art, but especially in art education,” Wanous said. “Training all of our students that want to be art teachers — she’s doing a great job on that.”
Michel said the university is a special place, and she loves being a part of it.
“I was honored to be promoted to associate professor of art for my teaching, service and scholarship,” Michel said. “I look forward to continuing my work with special colleagues, students and friends.”
Smith was promoted to professor of history. Smith is a faculty member of the Royal Historical Society out of England. Before working at the university, he taught history at the University of East Anglia, located in the United Kingdom.
“Dr. Tim Smith is truly a world-class scholar,” Wanous said. “He’s written a lot of really great scholarly works on Southeast Asia History and Politics. Not only is he a great teacher, which I think everybody knows, but he’s also a great scholar.”
Dr. Evelyn Priddy and Cynthia Steury, both professors of education, were also recognized as professor emerita.