Baylor & Georgia’s history of academic partnerships
When Baylor and Georgia meet on New Year’s Day in the Allstate Sugar Bowl, the accomplishments of both schools’ football and athletics programs will be on display on the national stage.
But off the field, the two world-class universities share a history of cooperation and competitive interaction in the world of academia and research.
In this year’s U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges Rankings,” both schools ranked among the nation’s top 80 universities — Georgia at No. 50, and Baylor at No. 79. U.S. News also found both schools committed to excellence in innovation (Georgia No. 38, Baylor No. 42), undergraduate teaching (Baylor 20, Georgia 40) and undergraduate research/creative projects (Baylor 27, Georgia 59).
With a number of mutual institutional research priorities, faculty from both universities have collaborated to publish research and journal articles in a wide variety of subjects, including business ethics, environmental sustainability, religion and social work.
One of the most nationally recognized (and highly sought-after) awards in academia is Baylor’s Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching, designed to honor great teachers, to stimulate discussion in the academy about the value of teaching, and to encourage departments and institutions to value their own great teachers. The 2001 co-recipient was Dr. Charles Warren Hofer of the University of Georgia, selected for the excellence of his work in the field of management.
An often-underrated means of institutional collaboration is through the university press, the in-house publishing operation of each school. For instance: Dr. Julie Anne Sweet, a popular Baylor history professor, published her first book (Negotiating for Georgia: British-Creek Relations in the Trustee Era, 1733-1752) through the University of Georgia Press. On the other side, Georgia faculty members have had their books published by Baylor University Press, including Dr. Wayne Coppins’ work as a co-editor of the academic series Baylor-Mohr Siebeck Studies in Early Christianity and Dr. Thomas Lessl’s Rhetorical Darwinism: Religion, Evolution, and the Scientific Identity.
Finally, graduates of both institutions have gone on to enrich each other’s academic ranks, with a number of alumni from Baylor and Georgia crossing over to join the faculty and staff of the other school, including 16 UGA graduates who have become Baylor Bears.
Sic ’em, Bears and Bulldogs!