Criteria for Award

Selection for the award is based on criteria expressed by the donors as well as those established by the Academic Council. In recognition of JMU’s commitment to become the national model of the engaged university, this award honors a faculty member who possesses a record of achievement in engaged learning, civic engagement or community engagement as defined by the university.

  • Engaged Learning: Developing deep, purposeful and reflective learning, while uniting campus and community in the pursuit, creation, application and dissemination of knowledge.
  • Civic Engagement: Advancing the legacy of James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, by preparing individuals to be active and responsible participants in a representative democracy dedicated to the common good.
  • Community Engagement: Fostering mutually beneficial and reciprocal partnerships, ranging from local to global, that connect learning to practice, address critical societal problems and improve quality of life.

At the time of nomination, applicants must:

  • be full-time instructional faculty, either tenured, tenure-track or RTA
  • hold the rank of associate professor or professor
  • be in at least their third year of employment at JMU (hired fall 2018 or prior)


  • Colleges are invited to make one nomination. Nominations must be made through the dean and supported by the nominee’s academic unit. 
  • Completed packets are submitted to the Associate Vice Provost for Academic Effectiveness and Evaluation by January 31, 2022 by email to    

 Nomination Materials

  • A nomination letter of no more than three pages from the academic unit head or unit PAC addressing the nominee’s record of achievement related to the award criteria
  • A personal statement of no more than three pages addressing the nominee’s accomplishments and contributions related to the award criteria
  • Faculty member’s current CV

 Nomination Letter and Personal Statement Guidelines

The nominee must possess a record of achievement at JMU in any of three areas of engagement reflected in JMU’S strategic plan: engaged learning, civic engagement and/or community engagement. Nomination letter should discuss the candidate’s accomplishments at JMU and in the profession, demonstrating clear evidence of the nature, level and/or degree of the nominee’s contributions.  Examples may include but are not limited to:    

  • Developing new opportunities for students to foster the learning of the concepts, values and practices of engagement. 
  • Seeking connections that engage constituents to be part of a global network aimed at achieving mutually beneficial outcomes.
  • Expanding service and collaborations provided to the local community, region and beyond in a way that is mutually beneficial to the university and the community partner.
  • Fostering an environment of collaboration across colleges and academic units.
  • Increasing the opportunities for students to participate in engaged-learning experiences.
  • Expanding experiential learning, mentoring and networking opportunities.
  • Involving students in research and creative activity.
  • Developing curricular and co-curricular activities aimed at elevating civic knowledge and action.
  • Implementing civic engagement academic activities on campus and with external partners.  


  • A selection committee makes a recommendation to the Provost, who selects the award recipient. The selection committee includes the Associate Vice Provost for Academic Effectiveness and Evaluation  (chair/non-voting), a Faculty Senate representative, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, the Mengebier Professorship recipient and two members from Academic Council appointed by the Provost.
  • Recipients will be announced at the award luncheon held on April 28, 2022.


Nominations must be submitted to the Associate Vice Provost for Academic Effectiveness and Evaluation by January 31, 2022 by email to


Alger Family Faculty Award Recipients


Dr. Kristen St. John
Professor, Paleoceonography & Geoscience Education


Dr. Anca Constantin
Associate Professor, Physics


Dr. Jennifer Almjeld
Associate Professor, Writing, Rhetoric and Technical Communication


Dr. William Evans
Professor, Psychology


Dr. William Evans
Professor, Psychology


Dr. Lori Britt 
Professor, Communication Studies 


Dr. William O'Meara 
Professor, Philosophy and Religion


Dr. Linda J. Hulton 
Professor and DNP Coordinator, Nursing


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