Faculty Spotlighted in National Education Journal

Faculty members Nikola Hobbel and Rosemary Sherriff appear in an article about mentoring new colleagues in the July 29 Chronicle of Higher Education’s fourth annual special issue on the academic workplace.

Headlined “Junior Professors: Juggling Teaching, Research, and Advice,” the CHE story tracks the fresh approaches universities are taking to attract and retain new faculty.

Quoting Faculty Development Coordinator Hobbel, the article says Humboldt State typifies the changing approaches in its extended faculty orientation program, versus the standard one- or two-day “cramming sessions” commonly used in the past.

Hobbel coordinates weekly, seminar lunch engagements the first semester that help new HSU faculty to develop networks among colleagues beyond their own departments. This deliberately phased approach avoids cramping new members at the outset with an information glut about benefits, tenure requirements and teaching resources.

In Hobbel’s words, “‘If you feel there are other colleagues on campus who share your interests and understand you, you’ll be much more likely to stay.’”

Assistant Geography Professor Sherriff took a tenure-track position at HSU in the fall of 2009 for its coastal redwoods location and for her own laboratory, where she analyzes tree-ring samples.