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Feldman receives Phi Beta Kappa professorship

December 22, 2016

Richard Feldman

Richard Feldman, a noted professor of philosophy who serves as dean of undergraduate academic and cocurricular programs at the University of Rochester, has been named the Romanell–Phi Beta Kappa Professor in Philosophy for 2017–18. Awarded annually to scholars in the field of philosophy, the professorship recognizes the recipients’ considerable achievements and contributions to the discipline.

Founded in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa is America’s most prestigious academic honor society, and advocates for the value and benefits of liberal arts and sciences education. The Romanell Award is made possible by an endowment from Patrick and Edna Romanell. A Phi Beta Kappa member from Brooklyn College, Patrick Romanell was H.Y. Benedict Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas, El Paso.

A longtime thought leader in philosophy, Feldman is recognized for his scholarship in the areas of epistemology and metaphysics. He is also well known for work in the development of the epistemological position known as evidentialism, which he developed with Earl Conee, a professor of philosophy at Rochester. Evidentialism is considered essential to the theory of knowledge and is based on the notion that beliefs are worth only as much as the evidence supporting them.

After earning his bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in 1970 and his PhD from the University of Massachusetts in 1975, Feldman joined the Rochester faculty, later chairing the philosophy department for 13 years. He was named dean of the College in 2006.

As dean, Feldman oversees the College’s undergraduate programs, including both curricular and cocurricular programs. He was deeply involved in developing the Rochester Curriculum, a widely regarded approach to undergraduate education that allows students to build their own curriculum based on their strengths and interests.

In addition to having taught philosophy courses, Feldman directed an internship program that places undergraduate students in the Rochester City School District to help city school children develop writing, critical thinking, analytical reading, and problem-solving skills.

As part of the Romanell award, Feldman will present three lectures that are open to the general public and the academic community.

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Category: University News