By Rachel Leider ’15
Siu-Lan Tan, associate professor of psychology, has earned Kalamazoo College’s highest annual honor for classroom teaching, the Florence J. Lucasse Lectureship for Excellence in Teaching.
The “Lucasse,” was established in 1979 in honor of Florence J. Lucasse, Class of 1910, in response to the major unrestricted endowment gift she bequeathed to the College in her will. In addition to the Lectureship, a Florence J. Lucasse Fellowship for Excellence in Scholarship is also awarded. Andrew Mozina, associate professor of English, holds the current Lucasse Fellowship.
Tan was taken aback by her award: “I think the world of my colleagues and students, and knowing that they nominated and supported me for this was overwhelming. I immediately teared up, as I felt it deeply.”
President Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran expressed her admiration for Tan as she presented the award during the fall quarter all-campus gathering in Dalton Theatre on Sept. 20. “Professor Tan often extends students’ experiences beyond the classroom, and these service-learning experiences transform their learning, making concepts that may have once seemed dissonant in class become consonant in practice.”
Born in Indonesia, Tan grew up in Hong Kong where she taught music. After moving to California, she earned a B.A. degree in music at Pacific Union College and taught music for several years. Later, she became interested in psychology and earned both Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in psychology at Georgetown University.
Teaching at Kalamazoo College since 1998, Tan offers courses in developmental psychology, creativity, and the psychology of music. In 2010, she co-authored the textbook The Psychology of Music: From Sound to Significance.
Per Lucasse tradition, Tan will speak to students, faculty, staff, and quests about her work at a spring 2012 lecture.
Congratulations, Dr. Tan!