Connecting campuses to promote excellence in math and science

Janet Andersen Lecture AwardJanet Anderson - Hope College Math Professor

Established by the Midstates Consortium for Math and Science in 2008

Professor Janet Andersen was a beloved faculty member in the Hope College Mathematics Department and served enthusiastically as the Midstates Consortium Director for five years before her life ended tragically in an automobile accident in November 2005. As a teacher and scholar, Janet was devoted to providing creative, high-quality learning experiences for her students, and she herself was always learning as she was teaching. As Consortium Director, she looked for ways to connect with and support natural science faculty, both new and experienced.

To honor Janet Andersen's dedication and commitment to her work with students and faculty in her teaching, research and service to the Consortium, the Janet Andersen Lecture Award was established in 2008. The Midstates Consortium will choose one or two faculty members from one or two of the Consortium member institutions each year to present the Janet Andersen Lecture at one or both of the fall Undergraduate Research Symposia on a topic of his or her expertise. The award recipient(s) will also receive a $300 honorarium.

The Midstates Consortium invites faculty, students, staff and administrators to nominate faculty members in the Consortium for the Janet Andersen Lecture award. We encourage nominations for faculty members of any rank who have vigorous research programs involving undergraduates, who are exceptional mentors for undergraduate research students, who are engaged and skilled teachers, or who create interdisciplinary research opportunities for undergraduate students.

The Consortium accepts nominations for this award each spring. The deadline for the 2018-19 award is March 18, 2019.  Please submit nomination letters as a pdf on College letterhead and include a current CV for the nominee.  The award recipients are selected by the Executive Committee at their spring meeting (usually held in April or May).

Send nomination material or any questions to Dr. Michael Seymour, Midstates Consortium Director,

2018 Janet Andersen Lecture Award Winners

Biological Sciences and Psychology

Dr. Neena Grover, Professor of Biochemistry and Chair of Faculty Executive Committee

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Colorado College, Colorado Springs, CO

The nomination letter for Dr. Grover introduces her as an active and ambitious scholar, an engaged and wise mentor for her research students, and a leader and role-model for the women and women-of-color scientist community within her department and in the Division of Natural Sciences. An example of her innovative learning-centered and student-centered pedagogy is the Community Based Learning approach used in Biochemistry II to understand HIV/AIDS transmission, prevention and treatment. Through Dr. Grover’s relationship with the Southern Colorado Aids Project students from the class make community presentations on these topics and use their conceptual learning in interdisciplinary community engagements. Dr. Grover consistently mentors students in collaborative research and regularly publishes results with student co-authors.  Her outstanding engagement of students in science outreach and research was recently recognized by a commendation from the Association for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Dr. Grover’s authentic passion for learning and discovery is seen in comments to a group of faculty: “the joy of science is really in doing it. It’s really about having a sense of wonder. I want students to get an idea of why, as well as how one does research, and to see that they can ask and make progress toward answering complex questions.” Dr. Grover will be recognized for her contributions to undergraduate research and educationby presenting the Janet Andersen Lecture at the 2018 Midstates Consortium Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Biological Sciences and Psychology.

Physical Sciences, Mathematics and Computer Science

Dr. Joanne Stewart, Elmer E. Hartgerink Professor of Chemistry

Department of Chemistry

Hope College, Holland, MI

Dr. Stewart’s background in synthetic inorganic chemistry, her passion for supporting authentic student learning, and her innovative curricular approaches are evident in her work to establish IONiC and VIPEr ( The Intellectual Online Network of Inorganic Chemists is a vibrant virtual ‘community of practice’ for the collaborative development and dissemination of learning materials through the Virtual Inorganic Pedagogical Electronic Resource website.  During her 30 years at Hope Dr. Stewart has been eager to incorporate new pedagogies that more effectively engage students, such as group activities, case studies, and integrative learning, all with the goal of developing a community of learners who can relate their coursework to world issues, their lives and the community in which they live. Dr. Stewart has routinely involved students in her laboratory research and her studies in chemical education and the scholarship of teaching and learning, with students as co-authors in resulting publications. Through interactions with students in the classroom or laboratory, or as an advisor or a mentor, Dr. Stewart has provided a supportive, compassionate approach in helping all students learn about and explore career, calling and life. Dr. Stewart will be recognized for her contributions to undergraduate research and education by presenting the Janet Andersen Lecture at the 2018 Midstates Consortium Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Physical Sciences, Math and Computer Science.

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