Graduate College selects inaugural faculty fellows

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KALAMAZOO—Two veteran faculty members have been named Western Michigan University's inaugural Graduate College Faculty Fellows.

Drs. Jon R. Adams and Louann Bierlein Palmer began their service as 2013 fellows at the start of the spring semester. They were selected following an application process for tenured faculty that occurred last fall.

The Graduate College Faculty Fellows program is a new WMU initiative that provides an opportunity for faculty members to develop as leaders on campus while making significant contributions to graduate education, says Graduate College Dean Sue Stapleton.

Both Adams and Bierlein Palmer serve on the University's Graduate Studies Council and have helped coordinate graduate education in their units.

They will be taking that commitment to graduate education to a new level by helping the Graduate College with a number of new initiatives during 2013. Adams will be focusing on student as well as faculty engagement and success while Bierlein Palmer will be focusing on graduate admissions and enrollment.

Jon Adams

Photo of Dr. Jon .

Adams

Adams is an associate professor of English who also is an affiliated faculty member in the Gender and Women's Studies Program. He serves as the English department's graduate director and teaches upper-division, graduate and special topics courses.

A 2007 nominee for the WMU Distinguished Teaching Award, Adams came to WMU as a visiting faculty member in 2003. He studies the cultural meanings of manhood and heroism as they inform American national identity. More generally, his research forms a confluence of studies in American representations of war, gender and masculinity, and American culture. He is the author of "Male Armor: the Soldier-Hero in Contemporary American Culture."

Adams earned a bachelor's degree from Montana State University, master's degree from the University of Montana, and doctoral degree from the University of California, Riverside.

Louann Bierlein Palmer

Photo of Dr. Louann .

Bierlein Palmer

Bierlein Palmer is a professor of educational leadership, research and technology who also serves as coordinator for the doctoral program in educational leadership. She has taught graduate-level courses focused on advanced leadership theories, policy analysis, doctoral studies and school community relations, via on and off-campus as well as online and hybrid ventures.

A WMU faculty member since 2001, Bierlein Palmer focuses her research on topics involving educational reform policy. She was one of a select few chosen to serve as a peer reviewer for the U.S. Department of Educations' Race to the Top grant program and before coming to WMU, worked in Louisiana as the governor's education policy advisor.

Bierlein Palmer earned a bachelor's degree from Michigan State University, master's degree from the University of Arizona and doctoral degree from Northern Arizona University.