Project Narrative core faculty member Frederick Luis Aldama was named one of the 2019 Distinguished University Professors, a rare honorary title given to full professors who, according to the Office of Academic Affairs, have “truly exceptional records in teaching, in research, scholarly or creative work, and in service.” Each year only a select few professors are given the title after a rigorous nomination and review process. Aldama joins fellow Project Narrative core faculty member James Phelan, as well as John N. King (emeritus), as Distinguished University Professors within the English department.
Reflecting on the distinction, Aldama stated:
“Since arriving here in 2005, OSU has been giving me some of its keys to its kingdom. I’ve been able to design curriculum, research and write books (creative and scholarly) as well as create spaces of learning, inclusion and outreach that grows from questions my students have, from problems or situations that puzzle me, and from my deep desire to seek answers to them. Working with my colleagues, students, and staff across the university, I've been able to create cross-disciplinary theoretical, practical, and public spaces of learning that explore the many relationships among the humanities, arts, and sciences so as to understand better our active consumption of all variety of planetary cultural phenomena—especially comics, film, and literature by and about Latinxs. For instance, there’s the thinking-in-practice model that informs my Humanities and Cognitive Sciences High School Summer Institute. Since its inception in 2013, HumCog has quickly become an extraordinary weeklong program that brings dozens of diverse high school students to campus to learn from OSU professors who seek to connect everyday experiences with insights from the cognitive and neurosciences. There's the Obama-White-House recognized LASER: Latinx Space for Enrichment & Research that builds community on campus by working with communities off campus: Latinx graduate students work with Latinx undergraduates on campus, and both groups work with Latinx high school students in the wider community. At OSU I've been able to publish 40 or so scholarly and creative books, including my first kid’s book The Adventures of Chupacabra Charlie set to drop this June, 2020. And, with the running of 9 different book series (creative and scholarly), I've been able to open doors for dozens of scholars and creators to get their work out into the world. Being conferred the title of Distinguished University Professor is a huge honor. For me, it could only have happened in the generative learning ecosystem that we have here at OSU.”