In a college as large as Arts and Sciences, the achievements are numerous. We have so many people doing so many interesting things. We created the Academic Stars campaign in 2008 as a way to highlight a few of them at a time and to have some fun with it. Each star gets his or her face on a Rolling Stones-like magazine cover that’s posted all around campus. Our stars’ stories detailing their accomplishments and talents are also posted online and shared over email and through social media. It’s a way to showcase what we’re doing with the campus community, as well as with alumni and other friends.
We’re proud of our newly announced stars, Mike Wagner from political science and Cal Garbin from psychology.
Cal is just a life force. He walks around in shorts and a polo shirt no matter what time of year it is. Many students who go into psychology don’t think of themselves as good at things like math, so they think stats is going to be difficult. But he quickly helps them move beyond that and see the importance of it. He’s one of the best teachers on campus. In fact, he’s one of the best teachers in the entire university system.
As a Midwesterner, Mike has a good understanding of Nebraska politics. Often in academics you find someone who is either good at the academic or the practical side. He’s good at both. He works hard to engage students and get them involved in the classroom and through research. As political science chair Beth Theiss-Morse puts it, he seamlessly intertwines his various roles and does so exceptionally.
So with great enthusiasm, I say congratulations to Mike and Cal. They are definitely deserving of the rock star treatment.