By Jeff Murphy, April 28, 2020
WARRENSBURG, MO – One of the pillars of engaged learning and future-focused academics at the University of Central Missouri is to provide opportunities for students to pursue meaningful research with faculty mentors. In the spirit of this goal, faculty member Jasmine Cloud, Ph.D., is being recognized this spring as the recipient of the Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentor Award.
The award is presented annually by the Office of Undergraduate Research, and selections
are made on the basis of nominations. Criteria include: mentorship of student research
and/or creative projects that demonstrate strong commitment to engaged learning and
future-focused academics; promotion of a culture that supports undergraduate research
and/or creative projects at department, college, and/or university-levels; incorporation
of undergraduate research and/or creative projects into the classroom; and contribution
to field through their own active research agenda or creative works.
Cloud is an associate professor of art history. She was nominated by one of her students,
Christina Foster, a junior sculpture major seeking a Bachelor of Fine Arts in the
School of Visual and Performing Arts.
“I was very surprised to win this award, and completely honored to be recognized in
this way. It was especially meaningful because it's a student-nominated award,” Cloud
said. “The greatest part of my job is interacting with and learning alongside my students.
I'm truly grateful for their support. Their desire and willingness to grow as thinkers
and people is incredibly inspiring to me, as an educator and a researcher.”
Cloud joined the faculty at UCM in the fall 2015 semester teaching art history to art and design majors, as well as general education students. She also directs this academic area’s Study Abroad program.
“We go on a tour to visit art museums, archaeological sites, and architectural masterworks
in European cities every May (though this year, of course, was cancelled). I don't
have art history majors beyond a few who have designed individualized degrees with
me, so I find that Study Abroad is an essential way to connect with and mentor students,”
Cloud said. “These trips are about so much more than visiting the sites and seeing
works of art in person (though that is wonderful), and I find these intensive trips
to be a way to get to know my students better, encourage them, their interests, and
their curiosity, out in the wider world.”