Scholarship at FHSU

Fort Hays State University recognizes that faculty members are teachers and scholars. Thus, this institution supports scholarly activities to a degree that is uncommon among state-funded regional universities. By applying for reassigned time, faculty members can periodically reduce their semester teaching load from four courses to three in order to complete projects. Generous travel funding for academic conferences is available as well.  The Faculty Development Fund, overseen by the Office of the Provost, provides money that is used to supplement the travel funding offered at the departmental level. As a result, many FHSU faculty members routinely present their work at international and national conferences. And finally, the FHSU Graduate School supports faculty and student scholarship through a variety of grants, monitors research activities, and assists faculty members who are interested in securing external funding through its Office of Scholarship and Sponsored Projects.

Opportunities for faculty members to share their research with the university community also abound. Sponsored by the FHSU Graduate School, a formal Sabbatical Presentation Series showcases the scholarly productivity of faculty members during their paid leaves. In addition, more than 90 faculty members belong to the FHSU Faculty Research Association, an organization that regularly hosts book signings, research presentations, receptions for scholarly speakers, and informal social gatherings where creative, interdisciplinary collaboration occurs. And then there are our campus publications devoted to research. Research Matters, the magazine of the Faculty Research Association, offers profiles of faculty scholars and celebrates their achievements. Fort Hays Studies, a long-standing monograph series, addresses scholarly topics of particular relevance to the Hays community - or to Western Kansas. A new online and print journal - The Teacher/Scholar: Journal of the State Comprehensive University - began accepting submissions in the Fall, 2008 semester.
     
Other expressions of our commitment to scholarship include the President's Distinguished Scholar Award, the highest honor on campus (awarded each year to an exceptional scholar), and the recent establishment of the Research Environment Committee, a standing committee that continuously explores ways to help faculty members do the work that they love. In short, ours is that rarest of institutions - a place where the symbiotic relationship between teaching and scholarship is not only understood, but cultivated.

Written by Dr. Tim Crowley
Dean of Graduate Studies and Research