Thursday, April 27, 2017

By Andy Goodell

One Day for Iowa proved to be much more than a giving campaign for the college. It was a chance for alumni and friends of the college to choose to donate in honor of a teacher that touched their life in a positive way.

These educators could be anyone from a kindergarten teacher to a graduate school professor, just someone who made an impact on the life of the person donating.

Shu-I Chang (PhD ‘97) gave in honor of her mentor, Associate Professor Carolyn Colvin. Colvin served as Chang’s academic advisor and would later become Chang’s dissertation chair.

Carolyn Colvin

Carolyn Colvin

“This is a really great opportunity for us to say, ‘thank you’ to our professors,” says Chang. “I cannot say, ‘thank you’ enough to Dr. Colvin. I learned so much from her about academic writing. I couldn’t finish my dissertation without her great help. I couldn’t become who I am today without her.”

Today, Chang is an Associate Professor in the Department of Foreign Languages at National Chiayi University in Taiwan.

Colvin says it was humbling to have a former student make a donation in her honor during the One Day for Iowa campaign.

In the years since Chang graduated, she and Colvin have kept in touch via e-mail and letters.

“I know I learned as much from her as she says she learned from me,” says Colvin. “I think a true mentoring relationship is one where the advisor and the student collaborate together on ideas and shape a dissertation project. It’s a dissertation I’m proud of.”

Thank a teacher who has touched and transformed your life. Visit: click on the gold “Give to Iowa” bar and enter the teacher’s name in the giving instructions.

Read more from the 2017 Alumni Magazine.