The list of faculty in the Templeton Honors College who have earned full professorship includes Drs. Phillip Cary, Steven Boyer, David Bradstreet, and Gary Jenkins. Dr. Walter Huddell’s name can now be added to that impressive list. Dr. Huddell earned a master’s degree from West Chester and another master’s degree and his doctorate from Bryn Mawr College. His research focuses on functional analysis, perturbation theory, and mathematical philosophy. He has been teaching at Eastern University for seventeen years, and with the addition of the Mathematics in the Western Tradition course to Templeton’s curriculum, he has been teaching in the college for the past six years.
To be granted full professorship, a faculty member must demonstrate great abilities in service, scholarship, and teaching. In these three areas of evaluation, the candidate is graded on a scale of 1 to 3. To become a full professor, he must earn a three in two of those categories and a two in the other category. Should a faculty member wish to be a candidate for full professor, he must have tenure, which Dr. Huddell earned in 2007. The professor then compiles a portfolio that speaks to the quality of their work in the different areas listed above.The portfolio includes one’s CV, teaching evaluations, syllabi, advising reports, committee service, and academic publications. Dr. Huddell serves on the Committee of Committees, which oversees the different committees composed of faculty. He has also served on the Faculty Senate, on which he spent some time as Moderator, or the liaison between faculty members and administration. The candidate’s portfolio also includes letters of recommendation. The Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Dr. John Pauley, selected faculty and staff of Eastern University to write letters of recommendation for Dr. Huddell, while Dr. Huddell provided external letters of recommendation.
Once the portfolio is complete, it goes before the Faculty Personnel Committee.The FPC reviews the portfolio and makes a recommendation to Dr. Pauley to either approve or veto full professorship. The Provost, Dr. Keith Iddings, then received Dr. Huddell’s portfolio, as did the President, Dr. Robert Duffett, and the Board of Trustees. All three of these bodies have the power to veto full professorship.
Dr. Huddell successfully made it through all of these steps and is honored with the title, “Full Professor” for doing so. This status is the highest academic status aside from entering administrative roles or retiring and earning emeritus status.
So, what can we look forward to seeing next from Dr. Huddell? He continues his mathematical research with colleagues from Bryn Mawr in the field of analysis. His article, “The Distributional Derivative: A Defense Against the Dark Arts,” is currently being peer-reviewed by the College Mathematics Journal. In laymen’s terms, the distributional derivative allows for the derivative to be taken of a function that is not differentiable. It bends or breaks the rules; hence, the Harry Potter reference. Dr. Huddell continues to chair the mathematics department, teach several courses in the department each semester, and advise students in the Engineering partnership with Villanova University. This summer, while teaching in the EQUIP program, Dr. Huddell is working on a new book that offers a historical overview of mathematical philosophy. He wants the book to present a broad historical survey of the philosophy of mathematics from a Christian perspective. Though he does not plan to advocate for a particular stance on the philosophy of math, it is most certain that he will write with great enchantment with and esteem for the field of mathematics.
As a recent graduate from Templeton and the mathematics department, I know I speak for the students, alumni, and faculty at Eastern University when I say: Dr. Huddell, welcome to the notable group of faculty in the college with full professorship, and thank you for your tremendous and rigorous work in academics, the institution, spirituality, and students’ lives.