Supporting faculty excellence, the Paul B. and Robert Dykstra Faculty Excellence Award endowment supports one faculty award per academic year. The award is designed to support faculty research, creative and scholarly activity. It is intended to be awarded to a tenured or tenure-track faculty member who is either currently involved in a project or has proposed a research, creative or scholarly project.
Robert Dykstra was named the University of Wisconsin River Fall Distinguished Alumnus of 1998. A 1957 elementary education and guidance graduate, Dykstra earned both master and doctorate degrees in educational psychology and education from the University of Minnesota. Dykstra’s prolific work, spanning three decades from the mid-60’s to the early 90’s, includes research that continues to be universally recognized as among the most important ever conducted in his field. In 1967, Dykstra and colleague Guy Bond published the groundbreaking study, “The Cooperative Research Program in First Grade Reading Instruction,” commonly known as “The First Grade Studies.” This national investigation remains the largest and most thorough study ever completed of beginning reading.
Recent honors for Dykstra include being elected to the International Reading Hall of Fame in 1996. Along with assuming various leadership positions at the local and national and international levels, Dykstra continues to remember his ties to the University of Wisconsin River Falls.
Paul B. Dykstra is the highly successful son of Robert Dykstra serving as the chief operating officer of Viad Corporation, and he serves as a member of the Board of Directors. Viad Corporation is an S&P SmallCap 600 company. Major subsidiaries include GES Exposition Services at Las Vegas, Exhibit group/Giltspur of Chicago, Brewster Transport Company Limited of Banff, Alberta, Canada, and Glacier Park, Inc of Phoenix.
One tenured or tenure-track faculty member will be awarded each year. The award will be announced at the fall opening meeting each academic year. The recipient of the award will receive $1,000.
Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
o: North Hall 116