“I know you -- you belong at Lewis.” These were the words Cathy
heard in 1992 from a former chairperson who learned of an open faculty position
in Lewis University’s Communications department.
Cathy credits this person with starting her on the road to a very fulfilling career. Cathy, who has been teaching at the college level since 1973, is a Professor in the Department of Communications. A native of Alabama, she came to Illinois in the mid 1980’s to complete her doctorate at Northwestern University. Some of the classes Cathy has taught include Small Group Communications, Managing Conflict, Organizational Communication and Persuasion Theories and Campaigns.
In addition to her teaching responsibilities Cathy also has assumed many key leadership roles in the University’s improvement processes. In 1994 she was the Plan Coordinator for the University’s first Strategic Plan. She also managed the administration of a $1.7 million Title III Grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Many of Lewis’ current enhancements in technology, faculty development and co-curricular learning are a product of the grant. Most recently she has become the Coordinator for the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP), the University’s reaccreditation process with the Higher Learning Commission. She believes that these administrative responsibilities have made her a much better educator. She appreciates that Lewis has recognized her abilities and given her the opportunity to use them in service to the University. “In each position I have experienced new learning myself. It has kept me alive, invigorated and fresh in the classroom. I have been able to use what I’ve learned to connect with the students and show them how certain skills can be used in the real world.”
Cathy is thankful that her former chairperson recognized the similarities
between her and the University. “My whole value system and the way I
teach are a good fit with Lewis. I believe the Lasallian Mission with all my
heart”, she says. “It is a nice feeling to go to sleep at night
and feel satisfied that I have made a difference.”