WMU News

Shirley Van Hoeven receives lifetime teaching award

July 13, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- A recently retired Western Michigan University communication professor has been chosen as the recipient of the National Communication Association's 2001 Lifetime Teaching Excellence Award.

Dr. Shirley A. Van Hoeven, WMU professor emerita of communication, will receive the award in Atlanta in November. The NCA, the nation's oldest and largest organization promoting communication scholarship and education, gives the award to retired college and university faculty members who have demonstrated a lifetime dedication to distinguished teaching. NCA has more than 7,000 members.

Van Hoeven began her university teaching career at WMU in 1970 as an instructor in communication. During her nearly three decades of teaching, she taught courses in interpersonal communication, conflict management, organizational culture, and power and leadership at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. She became the Department of Communication's graduate program director in 1979, a post she held until she retired in 1999.

Van Hoeven, who earned a master's degree in communication arts and sciences and a doctoral degree in educational leadership from WMU in .1970 and 1976, respectively, earned a number of awards during her career. She received the University's Distinguished Service Award in 1998, Woman of the Year and University Teaching Excellence awards in 1990, and the Alumni Teaching Excellence Award in 1976. In addition, she held key positions in the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and in such community organizations as Habitat for Humanity and Women's Services.

"Her passion in life is teaching," Dr. Steven Rhodes, chairperson of WMU's Department of Communication, says of Van Hoeven. "There could not be a better ending than being recognized with a national award in her field."

Media contact: Lisa Lueking, 616 387-8400

Office of University Relations
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5433 USA
616 387-8400