Duquesne's Honor College Director Receives University Ethics Award
Dr. Kathleen Glenister Roberts, director of Duquesne University's Honors College and associate professor in the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies, has received this year's Eugene P. Beard Award for Leadership in Ethics.
Awarded annually to a faculty member, the Beard Award honors those who best exemplify the University's commitment to moral and spiritual values through outstanding leadership in ethics in family life or in University or community service.
Roberts implemented ethical practices in leading two University-wide initiatives, the core curriculum and the Honors College. As a communications professor, her view of "integrity" differs from the usual equation with "honesty."
"To be integral is to be whole: to have integrity is to think, feel, speak and act as a whole person," she said.
In her role with the Honors College, Roberts has been instrumental in recruiting the two largest, most diverse and best academically prepared freshman classes in 2011 and 2012; launched the Honors Fellow program, and guided 60 honors students to conduct independent studies.
Roberts promotes service-learning-engagement with community and reflection upon how practical work dovetails with academic learning-and is invested in an ongoing project with the Daisy Wilson Artist Community in the neighboring Hill District. A group of Honors College students created a strategic plan for the organization and last year, created and led A Tour of August Wilson's Hill District for the University's Center for Catholic Intellectual Tradition.
At her church, St. Bonaventure Parish in Glenshaw, Roberts teaches religious education, preparing 68 students for Confirmation since 2010. Additionally, she volunteers on the boards and executive committees of professional and civic groups, serving also as a meet official for U.S. Swimming.
"When trying to reach strategic goals, it is easy to lose sight of the lived experiences of the human beings we serve," said Roberts, a Glenshaw resident. Viewing life as a philosophical walk with others, she noted that this approach "reminds me to be student centered and staff centered: to make others' concerns my own and to participate wholly in the tasks at hand."
Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic research universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. The University is nationally ranked by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review for its rich academic programs in nine schools of study for nearly 10,000 graduate and undergraduate students, and by the Washington Monthly for service and contributing to students' social mobility. Duquesne is a member of the U.S. President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction for its contributions to Pittsburgh and communities around the globe. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Princeton Review's Guide to Green Colleges acknowledge Duquesne's commitment to sustainability.