The TCU Promise Personified
Will Stallworth (Associate Vice Chancellor for Facilities) has spent his 23-year career at TCU facilitating the University's expansion and overseeing the Physical Plant staff responsible for everything on campus that gets dug, built, re-modeled, constructed, repaired, maintained, retrofitted, relocated, paved, cleaned, planted, mowed, piped, wired, fenced and furnished.
His department has 283 employees who handle 2,000 to 3,000 work requests in any given month. And that can be anything from killing a wasp on an office ceiling to setting up chairs for special events to solving bigger, messier problems that impact faculty, staff and students. The size of the campus has grown by more than 50% over the last 23 years, including 49 major projects since 1996.
All of those daily, yearly and long-range projects—how they happen and where they happen—can be traced back to Will Stallworth’s conference room peopled by Physical Plant staff and the army of workers who keep TCU looking “spit-and-polished” for all of us to take pride in and enjoy. Read more
Jess Price (Instructional Services) is another example of making that promise work on a day-to-day basis. Jess has been around TCU for the better part of 13 years, both as an RTVF and MLA student and later on staff where his first duties were filming campus events and creating educational media for the classroom. As the worlds of Internet technology and media have become more enmeshed, Jess' role has expanded into that of a consultant. He advises on how to incorporate technology components into teaching, research and classroom design. The Center for Instructional Services has "regular customers" like the departments of Social Work, Nutrition and Speech Communication who need to film their students for faculty evaluation each semester. Regulars aside, CIS serves all campus departments who want lectures filmed or video teleconferences designed. Jess says their onsite studio is currently in the middle of a massive overhaul where they'll upgrade their filming, teleconferencing, and presentation capabilities with cutting edge equipment. "We're always exploring what's next," he adds.
The individual who suggested Jess Price for the TCU Promise roster also gives him the highest marks for being "overwhelmingly helpful." "It's because of people like Jess—who have both phenomenal technical and interpersonal communication skills—that TCU is able to provide incredibly high caliber services to our students and other constituents," he states. Read more
Officer Pam Christian (TCU Police), is another example of making that promise work on a day-to-day basis. A 14-year member of the campus law enforcement office, Pam says she aims to teach students lessons that will stay with them for life. "I hope to them become a more aware person, a better citizen and a person who trusts police officers once they move into adulthood," she says. Pam is responsible for the Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) classes that are free and open to all women on campus, Assault Prevention Theatre that teaches students to assess potentially dangerous situations by way of a theatrical production, the Froggie Five-0 program that provides a safe golf cart ride from parking lot to residence hall when female students are afraid to walk and crime prevention talks which she will present to any campus group upon request. Offficer Pam Christian (TCU Police), is another example of making that promise work on a day-to-day basis. A 14-year member of the campus law enforcement office, Pam says she aims to teach students lessons that will stay with them for life. "I hope to them become a more aware person, a better citizen and a person who trusts police officers once they move into adulthood," she says. "I enjoy working with students, educating them to be safe during their college years," Pam concludes. Read more
Dr. Ken Richardson, Professor of Mathematics, is another example of making that promise work on a day-to-day basis. A member of the TCU faculty since 1993, Ken says his teaching strategy is based on putting himself in a student's shoes to see where they're coming from. By being a good listener, he can then figure out the simplest way to explain abstract concepts to the class. his guy makes calculus way more interesting and understandable than it probably should be," says the recent TCU graduate who nominated Ken as personifying the TCU Promise. "He also creates a community, small-group feel in the classroom." Ken explains he just tries to pace his lessons in a certain order so students will feel comfortable and be more likely to succeed. Off campus, Ken has volunteered with Habitat for Humanity since he was a graduate student at Rice University. He continues to serve as a site supervisor for a house every weekend during the fall. Read more
Dr. Sage Elwell, Assistant Professor of Religion, is another example of making that promise work on a day to day basis. Now in his third year at TCU, Sage brings energy and practicality into the classroom. His students expect him to ask a lot of questions. "The questions are more important than the answers," he says. "It's the way to get students to begin the process of critical thinking." He defines scholarship as someone viewing through a telescope and contantly having to adjust the lens to discover the basic truths.
By patiently sorting through students' questions and casually tossing in personal examples of living well, Sage "leaves your mind blown" on a regular basis, according to a former student. "He always finds ways to apply theory to the present and future and communicate those implications," he says. Read more
Dr. Lindy Crawford, Ann M. Jones Endowed Chair in Special Education, and director of the Alice Neeley Special Education Research and Service Institute, was the first to be recognized after the TCU Promise was initiated. A well-established scholar with a national reputation, Lindy embodies the teacher-scholar model at TCU. "I was not interested in accepting a position with the expectation of good research OR good teaching. I believe that one's research should inform their teaching and vice versa; TCU provided that opportunity, Lindy says. "At TCU, an endowed position contains expectations for faculty and student leadership, teaching success, and a high level of campus and community engagement. I find myself reaching out to staff and faculty across campus, regularly engaging in service to my college and campus, and contributing my expertise when asked. For me, an endowed position represents a reciprocal relationship with the University." Read more