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K-State Today

February 28, 2014



Esther Swilley kicking off Boyer/Switzer Lecture Series at noon today; Boyer, Switzer to be honored at the event

By Zelia Wiley

On behalf of the Black Faculty Staff Alliance, I would like to invite you to our faculty series today, Feb. 28, at noon in the Hemisphere Room at Hale Library. Esther Swilley, associate professor in the College of Business Administration, will present “Blog, Pin and Online Review Effects on Advertising Attitudes and Purchase Intentions.”

In addition to Swilley's presentation, this session will also involve honoring two giants in our community: James Boyer and Veryl Switzer by naming our featured faculty series the Boyer/Switzer lecture series from hereafter.

Boyer was hired to teach graduate courses at Kansas State University in the College of Education in 1971. He earned his Bachelor of Science from Bethune-Cookman College, a Master of Education in school administration from Florida A&M University, and a doctorate from Ohio State University.

Boyer saw himself as the spearhead for diversity. He brought to light the fact that there were only two female professors teaching a primarily female student body; he spoke to university faculty and administrators about recruiting a more diverse faculty; and he created courses addressing teaching students of diversity including the education of African-Americans.

While doing all of this, he also helped establish and implement the K-State Cooperative Urban Teacher Education master's degree program in the Greater Kansas City area. He drove to Kansas City every Monday night for 18 years, in all sorts of weather, to teach a class and then drive back to Manhattan.

Switzer, born in 1932 in Nicodemus, Kan., was the son of Fred and Ora Switzer and descendent Zach Fletcher, one of the first settlers in Nicodemus. Switzer was a standout football and track star in high school and at Kansas State University. He spent a decade working at the Chicago Board of Education before returning to K-State in an administrative capacity in 1969. He held several positions, both in the academic and athletic departments before retiring.

Switzer has maintained his ties to Nicodemus. In 2009 the Veryl Switzer Back to History Camp was established for youth to spend a week visiting both K-State and Nicodemus. Switzer has been a leader at Kansas State University for three decades. One of the things he started at Kansas State was the Veryl and Fern Switzer Campus Leadership Award for a student athlete who is involved in student organizations and multicultural affairs, demonstrates leadership on a team, a campus and is active in community service.

As you can see both honorees are worthy of this recognition. They are true pillars of the black and Kansas State University community. Please join us Friday as we celebrate this occasion, the first Boyer/Switzer Lecture Series. Lunch will be provided, and both honorees will be present.