Frey Named New Director of General Education

Thursday, August 30 2012


MOSCOW, Idaho – The University of Idaho has named Rodney Frey, professor of ethnography, as the new director of General Education. He began his new role this week.

“I am looking forward to collaborating with my university colleagues to help provide the best possible educational experience for all our students,” said Frey, who has been a member of the department of sociology and anthropology since 1998. “This is a great opportunity for faculty and students at the university to stretch their learning capacities.”

Frey will work with faculty from across the university to implement the general education reforms faculty approved in spring of 2012.

“This is an exciting new position for the university,” said Doug Baker, provost and executive vice president. “Rodney has tremendous experience in this area and will facilitate more cooperative learning.”

As General Education director, Frey brings a passion for general education and liberal education. He will coordinate the ISEM 101 and ISEM 301 courses; work with colleges, departments and faculty on all aspects of general education, including the senior experience; facilitate and lead the assessment of general education learning outcomes, and will serve as an ex-officio member of the University Committee on General Education.

General Education has an oversight board of Kathy Aiken, College of Letters Arts and Social Sciences dean, Paul Joyce, College of Science dean, Jeanne Christiansen, vice provost for Academic Affairs and Bruce Pitman, dean of students and vice provost of Student Affairs.

Frey is a recipient of both the University Excellence in Research Award and the University Excellence in Teaching Award. He has been recognized for his commitment to diversity with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Distinguished Faculty Service Award and the UNITY Service Medallion Award.

Over the last 38 years he has been associated with and conducting various applied, collaborative projects with the Apsáalooke (Crow) of Montana, the Schitsu’umsh (Coeur d'Alene) and Nimíipuu (Nez Perce) of Idaho, and the Confederated Warm Springs Tribes of Oregon. He is the author of four books, numerous articles, and several online learning modules.

His career has emphasized the interdisciplinary approach that is at the core of University of Idaho’s general education reforms. Frey served as a Humanities Fellow (2002-03) where he and colleagues led an exploration of how memory, imagination and creativity are influenced by the landscape of the Pacific Northwest. Most recently he completed his term as Distinguished Humanities Professor (2011-2012) with the theme and title, “Turning of the Wheel: the Interplay of the Unique and the Universal” that emphasized interdisciplinarity, diversity and universality. This program included 34 sponsored events with 51 presenters from across the university and Moscow community.
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