Stephanie Toering Peters, a Wartburg College biology professor, will be inducted into the newly established Dr. Richard L. and Sandra K. Wahl Professorship in Biology on Thursday, Oct. 10, at 11:30 a.m., in the Heritage Room of the Saemann Student Center at Wartburg College.
The professorship, provided through the generosity of Dr. Richard and Sandy Wahl, Waverly natives, will support teaching and learning in the biology department. The induction ceremony will include remarks from Wartburg College President Darrel D. Colson, the Wahl family, Toering Peters and Rebecca Miller, a current student. A reception will precede the ceremony outside the Heritage Room at 11 a.m.
“Wartburg was very generous in awarding scholarships to help support my college education many years ago and helped prepare me for a broad range of career opportunities as a physician scientist,” said Richard Wahl, director of the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. “This professorship will facilitate the recruitment and retention of top professors to assure the continuation of Wartburg’s high-quality liberal arts education with a focus on the sciences.”
Toering Peters joined the Wartburg College biology faculty in 2005 and works to advance the environmental science, neuroscience, and public health programs. She earned a Bachelor of Science in chemistry from Hope College and a doctorate in biochemistry from Stanford University. At Wartburg, she serves as chair of the biology department. Her research includes the role of Dgk in locomotion, neurotransmission, and synaptic homeostasis; the function of Drosophila Cc, the homolog to human Prohibitin; and supervision of student research groups. She advises pre-medical, pre-optometry, and pre-nursing students, and maintains Wartburg’s partnership with Allen College.
“It is truly an honor to be selected as an endowed professor,” said Toering Peters. “It is even more meaningful to have the gift come from an alumnus as a way to recognize the role Wartburg played in his career. This position will allow the chair of the biology department to continue our tradition of successfully challenging and nurturing our students. It recognizes the importance of strong leadership in shaping a department and continuing to be innovative in our teaching and responsive to the needs of our students.”
Richard, who graduated from Wartburg in 1974, is an internationally recognized physician scientist, a leader in the radiology field and is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine. Sandy is an accomplished math educator whose passion for education extends far beyond the classroom.
“Rich and Sandy know firsthand the transformative effect great teaching has on students’ lives, and their generosity will help our biology program continue to attract outstanding faculty and help students achieve success,” said President Colson.
For more information on endowed faculty positions at Wartburg College, visit www.wartburg.edu/chairs.