McGill Named Interim Director of Southeast’s Jane Stephens Honors Program

Dr. Jim McGill, professor of chemistry at Southeast Missouri State University, has been named interim director of the Jane Stephens Honors Program.

He replaces Dr. Kevin Dickson, professor of management, who assumed the position of interim chair of the Department of Management and Marketing effective July 1.

McGill is in his 17th year in the Department of Chemistry, and currently serves as chair of the University’s Faculty Senate. His research interests are in forensic chemistry and its applications as an outreach tool for stimulating student interest in learning about science. He is a 1996 graduate of Southeast with a Bachelor of Science in chemistry, and holds a doctoral degree in chemistry from Kansas State University. He is also certified as a diplomate of the American Board of Criminalistics in the specialty area of drug analysis.

He says he is most looking forward to being part of a program that helps students develop their own individual identities within a diverse community of fellow scholars who enhance one another’s success and promote learning and scholarship across the campus community.

“I have the privilege of a front-row seat to see these incredible young people discover their passions, discover how they and their academic disciplines are connected to the world they will live in and help to shape, and really discover what and who they are going to be,” McGill said.

Dr. Karl Kunkel, Southeast provost, said, “Dr. McGill is extremely student-centered and has a long successful history working with students in the prestigious Jane Stephens Honors Program.  I am so pleased he expressed an interest in serving as the interim director for the coming year.

“Though he is very busy this year serving as chair of the Faculty Senate, a very important position on our campus, in addition to regular faculty duties, he was enthusiastic to also work with our honors students maintaining the record of excellence established in that program over many years,” Kunkel continued. “I look forward to working with him in this capacity.”

The Jane Stephens Honors Program helps Southeast students stand out from their peers. The program offers educational opportunities tailored to the special needs, aspirations and motivations of students whose intellectual and creative abilities are outstanding.

When students graduate from the Honors program, they leave the University with the credentials and experiences that set them apart when applying for jobs and positions in graduate and professional schools, McGill said.

“They will also carry with them a lifelong imprint of those experiences and those people who touched their lives and whose lives they touched through the Jane Stephens Honors Program,” he said. “In addition to outstanding scholarship, I believe that the Jane Stephens Honors Program is about relationships, and that is one of the main reasons I love the program and am honored to help lead it.”