Congratulations to Assistant Professor and Department Chair of Social Sciences, Jana McCurdy, College of Western Idaho’s (CWI) Faculty of Distinction for March 2022. McCurdy has been at CWI for 12 years teaching primarily Psychology classes.
“The social and behavioral sciences help us understand ourselves and one another better,” she said. “Being able to apply research from psychology improves emotional intelligence which positively impacts our families, communities, and careers.”
As her students work toward their academic and personal goals, she enjoys being a voice of encouragement.
“I truly care about the success and excellence of my students. What students learn and the skills they develop at CWI can be used immediately and fuel them as both individuals and professionals. The future begins now, and I am so fortunate to be here and be a part of their journey.”
McCurdy is known by students and colleagues alike for her contributions across the College.
“I could not find the words to describe Jana McCurdy, and then one day, a student called her ‘salt of this earth’. That student is 100% right,” shared Professor of Psychology, Heather Schoenherr. “What resonates most with Jana is her ethical integrity that follows her in all areas of life. She is willing to use all her social capital to ensure we are doing right by our students and our disciplines and shares her skills and talents throughout the College without hesitation.”
Schoenherr added, “I feel grateful she is the voice for our department because I know she will protect education and advocate the value faculty bring to a college. She brings this same integrity into her classroom. She is respectful of the resources it costs students to be in class. She ensures every minute of her time with students is an opportunity to learn about the discipline, themselves, and society. Jana will meet students where they are at in the education and interpersonal skills to ensure they walk away more educated and self-aware. She is an excellent model of professionalism for faculty and students modeling curiosity and vulnerability to all around her, creating the perfect environment for growth.”
McCurdy was born in Pocatello and grew up in Idaho on fish hatcheries in Grace, Mullan, and Pahsimeroi near Challis. She and her husband have a daughter and a son who are both married and two grandchildren. Outside of the classroom she enjoys reading, playing games, watching movies, and being outdoors.
“I love the mountains and the beach. My husband and I enjoy hiking, biking, and swimming. We have fun traveling together to new places and camping during the summer.”