Danville couple establishes Distinguished Professor of Good Work

Psychology professor is first honoree

For immediate release: Feb. 27, 2015

BLOOMSBURG — Mary Katherine Duncan, professor of psychology at Bloomsburg University, has been named BU’s first Joan and Fred Miller Distinguished Professor of Good Work.

The Millers, Danville residents, established the distinguished professorship with a blended gift of $500,000 to the Bloomsburg University Foundation. Joan Miller is a BU professor emeritus of nursing; her husband is a physician specializing in dermatology.

“Young people entering professional life all aspire to do good work, but they find challenges,” said Joan Miller. “The distinguished professor will creatively choose options that will enhance student and faculty learning and experiences, enabling faculty to advance as educators and encouraging students to advance as leaders in a chosen profession.”

Joan Miller, who recently retired from BU’s faculty, has been involved in the Good Work Initiative at BU, a project focused on student excellence, ethics and engagement. She coordinates global research related to good work in nursing and has made presentations regionally at Geisinger and Hershey medical centers and at international conferences in Sweden and Australia. Duncan, originator of the BU Toy Library and a member of the BU Honors Program Advisory Committee, also is part of the BU Good Work Initiative.

The three-year renewable distinguished professorship recognizes a faculty member for achievements. Funding can be used for research, conferences, travel, software, equipment or other professional expenses to advance a project focusing on good work in one’s chosen profession.

“Joan has been dedicated to the concept of ‘good work,’ which encourages excellence and moral accountability among professionals,” said BU President David Soltz. “By establishing the Distinguished Professor of Good Work, she and Fred assure that our students will continue to be mentored by faculty who encourage them to pursue work that is excellent in quality, socially responsible and meaningful.”

“Fred and I are committed to supporting the Distinguished Professor Award,” Joan Miller said, “in an effort to sustain the university’s commitment to excellence, ethics and engagement among our current and future faculty and students.”

Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 10,000 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in the colleges of Education, Business, Liberal Arts and Science and Technology.