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University honors faculty: Liu, McEntire receive President's Medal

April 28, 2011

As Indiana State University prepares to award degrees to spring 2011 graduates in little more than a week, university leaders paused Thursday (April 28) to honor those who helped prepare those graduates.

Eleven faculty members earned recognition for teaching, research and service during a Faculty Recognition Banquet in Hulman Memorial Student Union.

President Dan Bradley presented the President's Medal, the university's highest award for faculty, to Karen Liu, professor of early childhood education, and Nan McEntire, associate professor of English.

"Professor Liu has been a staunch advocate for early childhood education" as coordinator of the Bayh College of Education's graduate and undergraduate programs and "has made a sustained and substantial commitment to the field of assessment," Bradley said in presenting the President's Medal to the 28-year faculty member in the Bayh College of Education.

He noted that Liu has served as president of the 10,000-member Association for Childhood Education International, has been a Head Start consultant for 25 years, serves on the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and has been a recognized keynote speaker on early childhood education in 12 countries.

Bradley said Liu has also advanced Indiana State's reputation by leading a delegation to Shenyang and Dalian, China to sign the first ISU-China exchange agreement, serving as advisor to the Taiwanese Student Association for 15 years and by helping lay the groundwork for the establishment of ISU's International Affairs Center, now the Center for International Programs and Services.

McEntire, a faculty member since 1998 whose specialty is folklore, "has taught and advised thousands of ISU undergraduates with energy, compassion, and skill" and has "pursued her art and scholarship with dedication and persistence" via peer-reviewed publications, regional, national and international presentations and an opportunity to represent Indiana State as a Fulbright Scholar in Ireland in 2010.

She "has dedicated countless hours to university and public service" as director of the ISU Folklore Archives and as executive board member of the Hoosier Folklore Society, the university president said. "Professor McEntire, teacher, artist, scholar, and servant leader, has earned the respect and admiration of hundreds of students, faculty, and staff alike through her academic accomplishments, good humor and compassion, thereby modeling the highest standards of collegiality and the academy."

McEntire said she is thrilled and grateful to receive the award.

There are many faculty on this campus who are equally deserving," she said. "I see examples of compassionate and engaged teachers at ISU every day, staying after class to talk to their students, sharing books and articles with them, taking an interest in them. It's why we're here. When a new idea has made an impact, when students want to keep the class discussion going-even when it's time to pack up and move along, I feel alive and committed and energetic. That's the best reward I have for being here. I couldn't have asked for a better career."

Other faculty members received honors for teaching, research and creativity, distinguished service and community-based learning.

Photos: - Karen Liu - Nan McEntire

Media contact: Dave Taylor, media relations director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3743 or