Nine faculty fellows and five distinguished lecturers were formally welcomed into Texas A&M’s Hagler Institute for Advanced Study during a reception on campus Thursday afternoon. This year’s faculty fellows class includes distinguished professors and scientists from across the globe who specialize in a wide breadth of studies.
“Building a great university faculty is not ‘once and done,’” the institute’s founding director John L. Junkins told guests congregated in the great hall of the JK Williams Administration Building. “It’s something you have to continue by bringing in talent every year.”
The 2019-2020 year represents the eighth Hagler Institute faculty fellows class, with 70 of these professionals now having been brought to the university through the program. Each year, the Institute accepts nominations for its fellows, and after selecting a handful, allots them differing amounts of funding for research projects to be conducted at Texas A&M with faculty and students. Each fellow may conduct work for up to 12 months, and can spread that work out over a number of years if so desired.
Distinguished lecturers, which are separate from fellows, are also selected and brought in to teach two-week seminar series.
Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp spoke briefly Thursday, and noted that more than $55 million in research grant money has been brought in by scholars with the Hagler Institute, with over $41 million from the governor’s University Research Initiative. Texas A&M Vice President for Research Mark A. Barteau commended the institute for this particular class of researchers brought to the school.
“I’m really impressed with the level of diversity in the class, “ Barteau said. “I think that’s critically important when we mention excellence, and as a part of the learning environment for our students. Our students benefit from a diverse learning and research environment.”
For the first time, fellows who have joined the university faculty long term will now be given the honorary title of permanent fellow. One of these permanent fellows, College of Architecture professor Harold L. Adams, had been a member of the third class of Fellows, and was in attendance to Thursday night’s reception.
“I’m a great believer in this [Institute], because Texas A&M is somewhat isolated, and [the Institute] has done a great job bringing in so many scholars,” he said, adding that he hopes more fellows make TAMU their permanent home.
The 2019-2020 fellows are listed as follows:
- Luiz Davidovich, professor of physics with the Instituto de Fisica, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro.
- Sharon M. Donovan, professor with the department of food science and human nutrition, and endowed chair with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s College of Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences.
- Mario Andres Hamuy, vice president and head of Mission Association with the University for Research in Astronomy Observatory in Chile.
- Peter J. Hotez, dean, professor and endowed chair with the Baylor College of Medicine.
- Kathleen C. Howell, distinguished professor with the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University.
- Misha Lyubich, professor and institute director for mathematical sciences at Stony Brook University’s College of Arts and Sciences.
- Henry Rousso, director of research de Classe Exceptionelle with the French National Centre for Scientific Research.
- Peter W. Shor, professor of applied mathematics with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
- Edwin L. “Ned” Thomas, professor of engineering with Rice University’s department of materials science and nanoengineering.
The 2019-2020 distinguished lecturers are:
- Martha Albertson Fineman, professor with Emory University’s School of Law.
- Deirdre N. McCloskey, distinguished professor emerita with the University of Illinois-Chicago’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
- Rachel F. Moran, dean and distinguished professor with the University of California-Los Angeles’ School of Law.
- Susan M. Wolf, presidential professor of law, medicine and public policy with the University of Minnesota.
- Huda Zoghbi, endowed chair and professor in multiple departments at the Baylor College of Medicine.