Distinguished Colleagues

Distinguished Colleagues

The winners of the Boston College Distinguished Faculty awards reflect the University's standards for excellence in teaching, research and service activities. In this issue, Chronicle profiles the two winners in the service category.

Name: Assoc. Prof. Susan Chase

Department: Connell School of Nursing

Years at BC: 10

The best part about nursing: "When a stranger walks in off the street and opens his or her life to you."

To truly care for someone, says Assoc. Prof. Susan Chase, caregivers have to go well beyond a patient's physical needs and hold spiritual and emotional needs in equal regard.

Chase has applied this philosophy to her own faith life at St. John Evangelist Lutheran Parish in Sudbury, where she serves as a parish nurse. She helps provide health screening, blood pressure clinics and a variety of other services that some individuals might not get elsewhere.

"But what's important about being a parish nurse is that you come to know people" said Chase, co-winner of the Boston College Distinguished Faculty Award for service. "When you do that you know what's going on in their lives and how it might affect their health."

She said the parish nurse sometimes holds a staff position, performing duties such as blood-pressure readings, promoting nutrition and exercise programs, delivering meals, and arranging transportation for the elderly. In a hospital setting, the parish nurse might pray with patients and help in making end-of-life decisions.

Through her work at St. John's, Chase has taken a leading role in the development of courses and programming for the Parish Nurse Program at Boston College. Her efforts led to the creation of the joint master's degree program in nursing and pastoral ministry degree.

Chase has become a sought-after expert on the topic and serves as the liaison in the Connell School of Nursing's partnership with the International Parish Nurse Resource Center in providing parish nurse education in the Northeast.

"Over her years at Boston College she has distinguished herself in the service to the University, the community and her profession," Dean Barbara Hazard Munro wrote in nominating Chase. "Throughout her work she involves and supports students and is deeply committed to Jesuit service."

Name: Assoc. Prof. Jeffery Howe

Department: Fine Arts

Years at BC: 23

Does he create any of his own art?: "I don't touch the stuff - I'm just a critic and a historian."

If the measure of an individual's service is what he gives to the community, then the world - or, more accurately, the World Wide Web - owes its gratitude to Assoc. Prof. Jeffery Howe, co-winner of the Boston College Distinguished Faculty Award for service.

Howe was on the cutting edge of the digital image revolution six years ago when he created an online archive of art that today numbers 3,000 images and is available to anyone with a Web browser.

The award-winning archive he began in 1995 contains images of paintings, sculpture, and architecture that, according to correspondence Howe has received, has been viewed and utilized by people from across the globe.

"It really began as a study tool for students," said Howe. "But it has attracted lots of attention from people outside of BC as well."

Howe's digital archive is just one example of his contribution to life at Boston College. He was responsible for bringing the Art Museums Image Consortium to Boston College, one of 20 universities in the nation to have such a distinction. The AMICO library is a database of digital images that contains about 65,000 pieces of artwork and is available to all students at Boston College.

Howe is the founding chair of the University Arts Council and he coordinates the annual two-day Boston College Arts Festival, one of the marquee events of the spring semester at Boston College. He also is credited with inaugurating Career Night for the Arts, an event that brings together BC students and professionals in various arts-related fields.

The coordinator of the Boston College Summer Program in Florence, Italy, Howe has served as director of the University Art Collection Committee and as a member of the Religious Art Committee and the steering committee of Boston College Friends of Art.

-Stephen Gawlik


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