Dr. Joe Jeffers, professor emeritus of chemistry at Ouachita Baptist University, was named 2018 Professor of the Year by the Central Arkansas Section of the American Chemical Society (ACS) at the society’s recent awards banquet at the University of Arkansas-Little Rock. This marks the third time Jeffers has been honored as the Central Arkansas ACS Professor of the Year throughout his career.
Students from each college campus are invited to nominate a professor. Using those letters of nomination, the Executive Committee of the Central Arkansas ACS selects the year’s recipient. Alyson Cole, a senior biology major from El Dorado and OBU ACS chapter president, submitted the nomination on behalf of the chapter.
In her nomination letter, Cole said, “Intentional, amiable, respectable, exceptional. Dr. Joe Jeffers exudes all of these qualities and more. I have never known another person who can explain the same concept in as many ways as he can. He is a professor with a true love for teaching. He is full of knowledge, life advice and quick wit. No one embodies the title of exceptional better than he does.”
Jeffers retired from his role as Ouachita’s Charles S. and Elma Grey Goodwin Holt Professor of Chemistry and Pre-Medical Studies in spring 2017. He returned for the 2017-18 academic year to teach Organic Chemistry 1 and 2. Jeffers said he was especially pleased that the nomination was student-initiated.
“I love my students,” Jeffers said. “It is fun to watch them grow as they learn to study and think. Nothing makes me happier than to think I may play a small role in their growth.”
Jeffers, a 1966 Ouachita graduate, holds a Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology from Purdue University and pursued postdoctoral study at the Open University in the United Kingdom and the University of Texas at Austin. He taught at Ouachita since 1972 and served as the founding dean of the J.D. Patterson School of Natural Sciences from 2002 to 2011. He previously served as the W.D. and Alice Burch Chair of Chemistry, chair of the Department of Chemistry and chair of the Division of Natural Science.
The ACS is the world’s largest scientific society and has the mission to improve people’s lives through chemistry. They have been recognized as a principal publisher of authoritative scientific information. The ACS provides information, education, professional development, career services and engagement services to help their members and scientists to thrive.
May 3, 2018