BCPM Celebrates Release of Chet Edwards’ Congressional Papers

The Baylor Collections of Political Materials (BCPM), the University's resource of legislative and congressional collections, celebrated the official release of former U.S. Rep. Chet Edwards’ Congressional Papers at a standing-room-only opening ceremony and reception March 3 in the W.R. Poage Legislative Library.

Edwards was first elected to Congress in 1990, and the collection covers his 20-year career representing Texas' 11th Congressional District through 2005 and Texas' 17th Congressional District until 2010.

Now the 13th Congressional collection held in the Baylor Collections of Political Materials, the Edwards papers further BCPM's mission to assist scholars and citizens explore the dynamic relationships between people and their elected officials.

"It is an honor to have my congressional papers added to those of Congressmen W.R. Poage (11th District 1937-78) and Marvin Leath (11th District 1979-90). Together these political papers represent 43 percent of Texas political history since Texas became part of the Union in 1845," Edwards said. "The Baylor Collections of Political Materials is one of the finest and most respected political collections in the country, and I hope it's a place where researchers and Baylor students and faculty can learn more about our local, state and nation’s political history."

The Edwards Congressional Papers measure 212 linear feet, with an additional 91 linear feet of oversized materials. In 2012, Baylor appointed Edwards as The W.R. Poage Distinguished Chair of Public Service. He is in residence two weeks each semester. He also assists Baylor students and interns when they are in the Washington, D.C., area. Since he began his service at Baylor in 2012, Edwards has taught 95 classes, mentored 67 students one-on-one and addressed 70 student and civic groups.

The opening of the Edwards collection coincides with BCPM's current exhibit, "Chet Edwards: Experience and Engagement" in Poage Library, which runs throughout the spring.

For more information about the Baylor Collections of Political Materials, visit

Baylor Bound transfer agreements made with three more colleges

Midland College, San Jacinto College and Tarrant County College recently completed formal Baylor Bound transfer agreements that will help students transfer more easily between the three institutions and Baylor, which will continue to expand educational opportunities for young people all across Texas.

As one of its goals under the Pro Futuris strategic initiative, Baylor intends to create 10 Baylor Bound partnerships over a five-year period. The recent agreements bring the partnership total to nine, including previous agreements Baylor established with McLennan Community College in Waco, Tyler Junior College in Tyler, Blinn College in Brenham, Collin College in McKinney, Temple College in Temple and Alamo Colleges in San Antonio.

Students who become part of the Baylor Bound program can choose a plan from 66 majors, all of which are articulated through specific MAPS--or Major Academic Planners--that will assist them as they move toward timely degree completion. More information about these majors and course transfer equivalency between Baylor and partnering institutions is available at

Baylor professors of the year represent sciences, math, arts and education

Each spring, Baylor honors professors with three major awards based on teaching, research and scholarship.

The first to be announced is the Collins Outstanding Professor Award, voted on each year by the outgoing senior class. Past Collins Professors include Dr. Randall O'Brien (1996), Dr. Tom Hanks (1998), Rachel Moore (1999) and Dr. Robert Packard (2002).

Dr. Bruce Hodson, senior lecturer in the chemistry and biochemistry department, was chosen by Baylor's Class of 2016 as this year's Collins Outstanding Professor Award winner. Hodson noted that he was especially honored to receive this award, as most of his students are freshmen and sophomores, which means the seniors who voted on the award still remembered him fondly.

The Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year award honors a professor who "makes a superlative contribution to the learning environment at Baylor," based on teaching, research and service. Past recipients include Dr. Robert Baird, BA '59, Dr. Kevin Pinney, Dr. Bill Hillis, BS '53, and Dr. David Lyle Jeffrey.

Dr. Johnny Henderson, Distinguished Professor of Mathematics, has been named the award's 2016 recipient. Many students sent in letters making the case for Henderson, citing the individual support they had received from their professor. "Johnny is adored by his students," said Dr. Lance Littlejohn, fellow professor and chair of the mathematics department. "As good as he is at research, he just might be a better teacher."

Funded by the Centennial Class of 1945, the Baylor Centennial Professor Award annually provides financial support to aide professors with specific projects. Past honorees include Robert Darden, BSEd '76, Dr. Greg Garrett, and Dr. Richard Russell.

Two Centennial Professors were honored this spring. Steven Pounders, a Baylor theater professor, plans to use his award to create a course in Meisner acting for Baylor theater arts students. Dr. Sandra Cooper, a professor and coordinator of the mathematics program in the School of Education, will use the award to study the methods of highly effective elementary school math teachers.

Ten other Baylor professors also received Outstanding Professor recognition during spring commencement ceremonies: Dr. Lisa Baker, BA '76 (Honors College), Dr. Julie deGraffenried, BA '93 (history), Dr. Steven Driese (geosciences), Dr. Shelby Garner (nursing), Dr. Dennis Myers, BA '68 (social work), Dr. Samuel Perry, BA '05 (Honors College), Dr. Chris Pullig (marketing), Dr. David Wilhite (Truett), Patricia Wilson (law), and Dr. Lesley Wright (engineering).