We are proud to announce the naming of our Dissertation of the Year Award in honor of Dr. Marylu McEwen.

We want to express our deep gratitude to Dr. McEwen for dedicating her life’s work, to her students and colleagues.  We have been changed for the better by her deep reflection and research. She has advanced our collective understanding of the complexities of social identity and the cultivation of agency, particularly when it has seemed unattainable.  Dr. McEwen has challenged us to rethink and reformulate at the contested intersections of our lives.  She has been a tireless mentor of young scholars and emerging professionals, engaged in sharpening their thinking and finding their own voices.

They are authentic witness to her impact as evidenced in this acknowledgement by Yen Ling Shek (2005):

“To Marylu McEwen, you are an incredible mentor, and I can only strive to match your compassion, humility, intellect, and commitment to students. Thank you for walking with me on this journey towards becoming a scholar-practitioner.”

Dr. McEwen is Professor Emerita in the Student Affairs concentration with the Department of Counseling, Higher Education, and Special Education, at the University of Maryland, College Park. In a career spanning more than 35 years, Dr. McEwen held faculty posts at Maryland and Auburn University, where she also served as Assistant Dean of the Graduate School. Prior to joining the faculty, Dr. McEwen served as Assistant Dean of Women at Purdue University and worked in residence life at Indiana University. Dr. McEwen’s professional service includes service as a Trustee of the ACPA Educational Leadership Foundation and a member of the Board of Directors for the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS).

Dr. McEwen’s work has been published in the leading higher education and student affairs publications including the Journal of College Student DevelopmentJournal of Counseling Psychology, and New Directions for Student Services, and she has authored numerous books and book chapters. Other scholarly activities include serving as Associate Editor of the Journal of College Student Development and as an ad hoc reviewer for the Journal of Higher EducationThe Review of Higher Education, and Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development.

Dr. McEwen is the recipient of many awards and honors recognizing her contributions to higher education and student affairs. In 2005, she was the recipient of our Contribution to Knowledge Award. In 2004, Dr. McEwen was recognized for her commitment to equity and inclusion with our Voice of Inclusion Medallion. Dr. McEwen is also the recipient of the University of Maryland Board Of Regents’ Faculty Award for distinguished performance in mentoring. In 1999 she was selected as a member of the ACPA Educational Leadership Foundation’s Diamond Honoree inaugural class.

Dr. Susan Jones, Professor in the Department of Educational Studies at The Ohio State University and a doctoral advisee of Dr. McEwen, said “Marylu possesses many gifts, but one of the greatest is the genuine delight she takes in the accomplishments of her students, who of course would not be nearly so accomplished without her mentoring and support. Her generosity is unparalleled. Supporting students has always been her raison d’être without fanfare, attention, or accolades. Such humility, generosity, and caring are central to who she is as an educator, colleague, and person.”

Dr. Debora Liddell was a new professional when she gained a mentor in Marylu McEwen, then a professor at Auburn University where they both worked. “For decades, Marylu has been steadfast in her support and championship of my professional advancement and my thinking about bigger issues,” Liddell said. “She has been a selfless servant of the profession, and her impact has been magnified by the fact that so many of her mentees have become professors and mentors of young scholars. Her legacy is timeless, and this award is the perfect intersection of her commitment to social justice and scholarship in higher education.”

The recipient of the inaugural Marylu McEwen Dissertation of the Year Award will be announced in December and recognized at our Annual Convention.