A new FACET of education at Towson University is key

By Matt Palmer on October 29, 2019

President Kim Schatzel helps open resource center for Towson University professors.

facet schatzel fellows

When President Kim Schatzel came to Towson University in 2016, her priorities included creating a world-class faculty development center. Less than four years later, that dream has come true.

Schatzel welcomed the opening of the Faculty Academic Center of Excellence at Towson (FACET) on October 15 at Cook Library.

"You have no idea how excited I am," a beaming Schatzel told a crowd gathered outside the FACET space, which is on the fourth floor of Cook.

The center will champion pedagogy, and serve as a resource in advancing the academic discipline by supporting excellence in teaching, learning, and research activities.

FACET features an inaugural Faculty Fellows program, partnerships to promote research, workshops and resources, mentorship for career growth and to refine skills, and emerging technology support. Following a ribbon-cutting ceremony, attendees walked around the inviting FACET space, which has a reconfigurable collaboration area with large whiteboard table and has three touchscreen computers with large monitors for collaboration.

The first FACET fellows chosen are Samuel Gerald Collins, Karla Kubitz and Mary L. Slade. The program begins in January of 2020. The fellows are allowed opportunities to lead campus-wide initiatives in their respective areas of expertise and to shape faculty professional development programs throughout TU.

Patricia Westerman, assistant provost at FACET, told those gathered that there is a culture of support on campus that will only be strengthened.

"It's such a wonderful, welcoming community and it's really what we want to be for the faculty," Westerman told the crowd.

Westerman said the office is particularly interested in assisting faculty at TU with scholarship, research, grant writing, teaching and service. Westerman told faculty FACET staff would be deeply interested in regularly hearing from faculty about what they need. One of the key components, she told the crowd, is for the Center to be "by the faculty and for the faculty."

"We really want you to drive the Center," she told those gathered.

Schatzel said the groundwork has been laid for the future of Towson University with FACET.

"Without the faculty and the support of the faculty and the excellence of the faculty, you might as well close the doors," Schatzel said. "The university begins and ends with having an excellent faculty. I want to make sure we're investing in and supporting the work of the faculty."

This story is one of several related to President Kim Schatzel’s priorities for Towson University: TU Matters to Maryland, Lifelong, Diverse and Inclusive Campus, Culture of Philanthropy, World-Class Faculty Development Center. and Strategic Plan Alignment.