Former Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Pat Lipira and the late Dr. Al Cade, dean of the School of Education, were awarded faculty emeritus status during the Board of Governors meeting held Friday, Nov. 20, at Missouri Southern State University.

A new medallion has been designed to honor those awarded faculty emeritus status.

A new medallion has been designed to honor those awarded faculty emeritus status.

The prestigious emeritus status is granted as a result of meritorious service to the university, including significant contributions in areas such as teaching, job performance, and scholarly and creative activities. In order to be eligible, faculty must hold the rank of associate or full professor after a minimum of 15 years of service. It is typically not awarded until retirement or, in some cases, posthumously.

Nominations for faculty emeritus start at the departmental level and must be approved by the dean of each school before then being approved by the provost and university president, and then voted on by the board.

Dr. Pat Lipira

Dr. Pat Lipira

Lipira retired following the Spring 2015 semester as the vice president of academic affairs, a position she held since 2012. In her 34 years at Missouri Southern, she served as head softball coach for 19 seasons and for seven as volleyball coach. She stepped down from her coaching duties to serve as head of the Department of Kinesiology before her appointment as interim vice president of academic affairs.

The nomination letter for Lipira stated that her “student-centered outlook never wavered as she moved into leadership positions at the University. Her expectations for students, faculty and herself always remained high as she led by example. Her authentic and transparent leadership style endeared her to students and faculty alike.”


Dr. Al Cade

Cade, who passed away on Feb. 21, first joined Missouri Southern as a physical education instructor and assistant football coach in 1984. In 1996, he was named assistant to the dean of the School of Education.  He served as chair of the Department of Teacher Education from 2005 to 2012, when he was appointed interim dean of the School of Education before being named the school’s dean.

The nomination letter for Cade said that his “accomplishments in teaching, scholarly work, and service are widely regarded in official capacities, but the most powerful evidence of his merit are the anecdotal stories, friendships established, students influenced, and opportunities provided for others in a legacy of service.”

Cade’s wife, Dorothy, accepted the honor on his behalf.

In other business, the board heard a presentation on Missouri Southern’s dual-credit and dual-enrollment programs by Julie Wengert, director of academic outreach.

Dual-credit classes are Missouri Southern courses taken by high-school students at their school, and taught by a qualified high-school instructor. Credit is awarded by their school and by the university.

Dual-enrollment courses are taken by high-school students either online or on the Missouri Southern campus. Credit is awarded by the university, and may be awarded by the high school.

Currently, there are 380 area high-school students dual enrolled at Missouri Southern, with 322 of them as dual credit only. The students are enrolled in 1,743 credit hours, with 1,422 of those as dual credit only.

Wengert told the board that the dual-enrollment program is one that lends itself well to expansion.

“We are actively marketing on-campus programs for the summer as well as online courses to provide students a genuine university experience prior to high-school graduation,” she said. “We are also working on an exciting idea with the potential to connect Missouri Southern with high-school students statewide.”