University Libraries program honors tenured, promoted faculty through books

Penn State President Eric Barron reviews books and personal statements on display in the Paterno Family Humanities Reading Room in Pattee Library. Titles selected by the 2018 faculty cohort of the University Libraries’ Promotion and Tenure Recognition Program will be added to the Libraries’ permanent collection and affixed with a bookplate recognizing each faculty member’s achievement. Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Recently tenured and promoted Penn State faculty across the University were honored Oct. 16 at Pattee Library, on the University Park campus, through Penn State University Libraries' Promotion and Tenure Recognition Program, now in its 15th year.

The Promotion and Tenure Recognition Program asks each newly tenured or promoted faculty member to select a book title for the University Libraries' permanent collection, and also to submit a personal statement explaining why the book was chosen. Titles not already in the collection are purchased, and each is affixed with a bookplate to commemorate the faculty member’s achievement. Each faculty cohort’s book selections and personal statements are listed online, searchable by year and by last name.

Dean of University Libraries and Scholarly Communications Barbara I. Dewey welcomed honorees, their families and invited colleagues during a private event held in the Paterno Family Humanities Reading Room, on the second floor of Pattee Library. Faculty members’ selected titles and their words of dedication were on display.

The 2018 faculty selections for the Libraries’ Promotion and Tenure Recognition Program provide a wide array of subjects and reasons for which the titles were selected. They range from “The Complete Calvin & Hobbes” by Bill Watterson to “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” by Atul Gawande. The faculty members selected these, writing respectively, because “I will always think of Calvin and Hobbes as a reminder of the truly important things in life. Just thinking about the comic strips makes me want to go hug my kids,” and “Dr. Gawande is a brilliant and insightful surgeon and human. I recommend all of his books, especially to be read in the order published. I also recommend reading after listening to one of his talks just to hear his voice as you read.” Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

Penn State President Eric Barron and Executive Vice President and Provost Nick Jones also offered brief remarks. “This is the perfect place to honor our newly tenured and promoted faculty,” Jones said, noting the event's academic research library location. Congratulating the honorees, he added, “Penn State’s promotion and tenure processes are rigorous, and we hold them in high regard.”

Barron acknowledged the honorees and their invited guests, including spouses, partners and family members, who have supported the faculty members through years of teaching and research to achieve their academic milestone.

“Today, surrounded by your greatest influences, we celebrate excellence in writing and all the success it has led to for you,” Barron said. “This year’s group has selected 60 titles to be added to Penn State’s permanent collection. They cover a fascinating range of subjects and express the meaningful connections you have with teaching and learning, exploration and discovery, and the pleasures of craft.”

To read each faculty member's entry and for more information about the Libraries’ Promotion and Tenure Recognition Program, visit

Last Updated October 19, 2018