Veteran administrator is associate dean of Lee Honors College

Contact: Jeanne Baron
Photo of Jane Baas.


KALAMAZOO—A veteran administrator and longtime faculty member at Western Michigan University has been appointed associate dean of the Lee Honors College.

Jane Baas, chair and professor of dance, will begin her new role Wednesday, Jan. 1, pending approval by the WMU Board of Trustees. Baas has been a member of the dance faculty since 1981 and is serving her fifth term as department chair.

Jane Baas

Baas has been serving as dance department chair since 2012. Prior to that, she was chair from 1996 to 2001 and did three stints as interim or replacement chair. She also served as coordinator of academic advising for the College of Fine Arts from 1986 to 1990 and even while a full-time faculty member, Baas had partial administrative duties in the dance department as director of recruitment and retention.

She received the College of Fine Arts Outstanding Service Award in 2003 and the college's Dean's Teaching Award in 2006. Her teaching assignments have included choreography, dance science and kinesiology, conditioning, and dance history and management.

Baas has received grants to produce her own concerts and recently has conducted research projects focusing on dancer wellness. She has served as a master teacher at several conferences and festivals and has presented her scholarly and artistic work internationally as well as nationally.

A frequent site evaluator for the National Association of Schools of Dance, Baas serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Dance Medicine & Science and is the dance department's representative to the National Association of Schools of Dance and Michigan Dance Council.

She is a member of the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science and has served on the board of the Michigan Dance Association. She also was a board member for the American College Dance Festival Association and directed its festivals at WMU in 1985, 1996 and 2007.

Baas earned bachelor's and master's degrees in dance from WMU and a master's degree in modern dance from Case Western Reserve University.

Lee Honors College

The Lee Honors College is among the oldest honors programs in the nation and has a student profile rivaling that of the most elite private colleges in the United States. Members come from all seven of WMU's degree-granting colleges and at some 1,600 undergraduate students, they represent about 8 percent of the University's undergraduate student body.

The college enhances WMU's dynamic academic climate by providing small seminar classes and special mentors and advisors. It also offers added opportunities to travel and conduct research alongside established faculty members as well as to study independently or abroad.