TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (Press Release) – Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology has appointed political science professor Terrence Casey as the inaugural Alfred R. Schmidt Chair for Excellence in Teaching. The program recognizes the best and brightest of the institute’s faculty who are committed to excellence and innovation in their fields and in educational pursuits.
G. Felda Hardymon, a 1969 mathematics alumnus, endowed the new faculty chair through $2.39 million in proceeds from the auction of his customized McLaren P1 hypercar in the spring of 2017.
“I am surrounded at Rose-Hulman by some of the finest educators in the world,” said Casey, a member of the Rose-Hulman faculty since 2000. “Given this, I am both surprised and honored to have been selected as the inaugural chair.”
Rose-Hulman Provost Anne Houtman notes that faculty recipients of endowed chairs influence the institute’s culture and strategic direction while leading valuable conversations in their career fields.
“We have always invested in teaching, and the Alfred Schmidt endowed chair reinforces that commitment while enabling us to continue attracting and retaining world-class faculty,” said Houtman, who also serves as vice president for academic affairs.
Through a three-year appointment, the new faculty chair will support creation of transformative learning experiences in the classroom at Rose-Hulman and provide opportunities for national engagement with other exceptional scholars.
Casey will concentrate on courses involving the institute’s first-year international curriculum, including providing faculty-led study abroad courses students can experience as soon as they are accepted into Rose-Hulman. These courses will begin in the summer of 2021.
“I regularly remind our students that engineers design for the real world, not the classroom or the lab. To do that effectively you need to fully understand the people inhabiting that world, with all of their foibles and complexities,” said Casey. “I am delighted that I have the opportunity to work to expand the number of faculty-led study abroad courses, providing our students with many more opportunities to integrate international experiences into their engineering education.”
Casey teaches political science, and his research interests primarily focus on British politics and comparative political economy. He served as chair of Rose-Hulman’s Department of Humanities and Social Sciences from 2009-17, and received the Board of Trustees' Outstanding Scholar Award in 2012.
President of the British Politics Group of the American Political Science Association, Casey was the group's executive director from 2005-14. He has published several scholarly articles in such journals as Political Studies, Social Science Quarterly, the British Journal of Politics and International Relations, and Comparative European Politics. His books include one that examines how the global financial crisis of 2007-08 changed America and Britain and another that explores the legacy of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. He is currently working on a book on the rise of former British leader Margaret Thatcher.
Casey earned a bachelor’s degree from Towson University in 1990, a master’s degree from George Washington University in 1996 and a doctorate from George Washington in 2000.
Schmidt, an inspirational mathematics professor for 46 years, was one of Rose-Hulman’s most loyal alumni and longest-serving faculty members until his retirement in 1995. He helped launch the institute’s successful Operation Catapult, a program that continues to bring rising high-school seniors to campus each summer to learn about science and engineering. The 1949 mechanical engineering graduate died in 2007.