Indiana State University Newsroom

Legacy of renowned Geography professor celebrated with gift to ISU

December 23, 2020

A new endowment has been established at Indiana State University in memory of Dr. Paul W. Mausel, a renowned emeritus professor who taught in the Department of Earth and Environmental Systems.

A $25,000 gift from Jean Mausel, Dr. Mausel’s wife, will establish the Dr. Paul W. Mausel EES Graduate Research/Travel Award. The endowment will support research, experiential learning, and professional development for ISU graduate students studying geographic information systems, remote sensing, and geospatial techniques.

Mausel, who passed away in 2013, was a pioneer in the field of remote sensing, which a government website describes as the measurement of “reflected and emitted radiation at a distance (typically from satellite or aircraft)” for purposes such as tracking growth of a city and changes in farmland or forests over several years or decades. 

Said Jean Mausel of her late husband, “His dedication, perseverance, and love of scientific challenges propelled him to many accomplishments, and his enthusiasm inspired numerous graduate students to be inquisitive and determined scientists, pursuing their individual or cooperative interest with passion.”

During his 30-year career at Indiana State, Dr. Mausel served as director of ISU’s Remote Sensing Lab before retiring in 2001. The success of his graduate students was a focal point of his tenure, during which he served on nearly 100 thesis and dissertation committees for Master’s and Ph.D. students.

“Dr. Paul Mausel was a giant in his field, training and influencing hundreds of graduate students and future scholars,” said Christopher Olsen, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “He was simply one of the most prolific and honored scholars of remote sensing in the country. This gift will allow future generations of graduate students to follow in Dr. Mausel’s path-breaking footsteps.”

Dr. Mausel earned an international reputation, serving on 50 externally funded projects from the National Science Foundation, NASA, the Environmental Protection Agency, and other agencies. He published more than 150 book chapters and articles in international journals.

Dr. Mausel also received numerous accolades for his teaching and research, including a special award from NASA’s Johnson Space Center and the Outstanding Contribution Award from the Association of American Geographers’ Remote Sensing Specialty Group.

“Dr. Paul Mausel’s distinguished career and dedication to his students is important to Indiana State University,” said Jeremiah Turner, Associate Vice President of University Advancement. “We are thankful to Jean Mausel for her contribution to honor her husband’s legacy.”

The first award of the Dr. Paul W. Mausel EES Graduate Research/Travel Award will be made during the Spring 2021 semester.

“He believed in supporting his students in many ways so they could achieve their goals,” Jean Mausel said. “Graduate students in EES will now have the opportunity to apply for and receive the funding that they may not otherwise have been afforded, and can pursue their goals as Paul would have encouraged them to do.”

Photo of Paul W. Mausel