Psychology Professor Conway Saylor has been named a 2012 Governor's Professor of the Year for four-year colleges and universities by the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education.
Saylor was honored at the capitol today in Columbia for her dedication and passion to teaching and service learning, which has resulted in a renewed focus on service learning at The Citadel. Saylor led the revamp of community service efforts into a key component the college's principled leader development program. With Saylor's guidance, The Citadel now requires every sophomore to participate in a service learning seminar where cadets spend time as volunteers in the Lowcountry. She also garnered support for Heroism Day, a Corps-wide, one-day event that gets cadets off campus and into the community. Last November, a little more than 2,000 of the 2,135 members of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets participated in the first Heroism Day.
Saylor said the Professor of the Year award is a "team award," adding she was both surprised and honored to receive it. "It actually moved me quite a bit and I thought this might be a good chance to shine a light on some of the things that I'm passionate about."
The Commission on Higher Education annually selects one professor from a two-year and four-year institution to honor for a track record of outstanding teaching awards, published academic articles, and demonstrated a commitment to public service.
"I can think of no faculty member who better fulfills the roles of teacher and scholar while further distinguishing herself through exemplary service to The Citadel and to the larger community,' Hines said. "She is the perfect embodiment of what constitutes the absolute best in a university faculty member and is most deserving of this recognition."
Saylor has taught psychology at The Citadel for 19 years. Born and raised in Richmond, Va., she received her bachelor's in psychology from Colorado College and her doctorate in clinical psychology from Virginia Tech. She worked at the Medical University of South Carolina for a decade before joining The Citadel Psychology Department.
Saylor's research has made substantial contributions in several areas of pediatric psychology including developmental outcomes for infants born prematurely, support for families who have a child with disabilities, child stress and trauma, and children and disasters. Her most recent work is in two complimentary areas: bullying (especially in youth with special needs) and heroism (child and adult concepts).
Saylor has been recognized many times for outstanding teaching and scholarship, including awards from the South Carolina Psychological Association and the Low Country Educators' Cooperative. She is a three-time recipient of The Citadel's Faculty Achievement Award and has authored 77 refereed articles, wrote or edited 11 book chapters, and has been awarded more than $1.6 million in grants.