Message from the Dean
It was with humility and some trepidation that I recently assumed the role of dean ad interim of the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences at UT Dallas. Our beloved and admired former dean, Bert Moore, passed away at his home on Oct. 20, surrounded by dear friends and family.
I worked with Bert since he first arrived on campus in 1980. I know as well as anyone that he left us with shoes that are, quite simply, impossible to fill. I will make every effort to continue the Bert Moore tradition of commitment to what is fine and true in all areas of research, teaching and mentorship in our school.
In the spirit of this tradition, I assure you that our BBS activities, events and awards will continue to have an important place at our school.
For example, we will continue to bestow the Duane and Linda Buhrmester Undergraduate Research Award, the John Santrock Travel Award, Student Scholarship Awards, the Susan and Jim Jerger Research in Audiology Fellowship, the Stillman Award for MS in Communication Disorders students, the Carol and Maynard Redeker Graduate Fellowship Award, and the Dean’s Awards for Excellence and Student Leadership commencement awards.
We also will continue to host the new faculty and PhD student luncheon and a BBS table at the Alumni Awards Gala. I will make sure we carry forward events including the BBS Welcome Week, Senior Launch and the new Brain Matters talk series. Our affiliated centers, including the Callier Center for Communication Disorders, Center for BrainHealth, Center for Children and Families, and Center for Vital Longevity, will continue their BBS traditions as well.
In addition to continuing all these wonderful awards, events and outreach activities for our students and alumni, I also will strive to acquire, in some small measure, character traits that I always have viewed as among Bert’s very finest: His grand generosity of spirit, his faith in the potential of other people, and the joy he always showed in response to their success.
There are so many examples of how Bert demonstrated this generous, faithful spirit; I could not possibly begin to count them, let alone describe even a fraction in detail. But I will close this message with one example. It is a very small example, but I believe it captures the essence of many others:
Many years ago I was looking over the syllabus for one of Bert’s courses, and I was struck to see there was no explicit mention of “exams” or “tests.” Of course the course had tests, but Bert did not call them that. Instead, he called them “opportunities.” There was an “opportunity 1,” an “opportunity 2,” and I assume an “opportunity 3” and maybe an “opportunity 4.” I do not recall, however, a test labeled “final opportunity.” I doubt there was one. Bert always made sure that opportunities for others didn’t end. He always did his best to make that wish real.
Thank you for being part of the BBS family.