Department of Psychology

Frank Fulkerson Outstanding Alum Award

Description and Criteria for Selection

Dr. Fulkerson was an integral part of the Psychology Department, the College of Arts & Sciences, and Western Illinois University. Dr. Fulkerson was hired as a faculty member in the Department of Psychology at Western Illinois University in 1968. He served as chair of the department from fall 1976 to 1985 and came out of retirement to serve as interim chair in the fall of 2008. Beyond his leadership, Dr. Fulkerson is committed to student learning beyond the classroom. He established the first career web-page and careers course to assist psychology majors in meeting their occupational goals, and conducted alumni surveys to keep up to date with the actual employment of our alumni after graduation. He also served as a consulting editor for the journal Teaching of Psychology from 1986 until his initial retirement in 2000. Dr. Fulkerson was an integral part of the Psychology Department, but his service extended to the Western Illinois University community through his service as, first, Assistant and, then, Associate Dean for the College of Arts and Sciences from 1985 to the fall of 1998. In celebration of the Department of Psychology’s 50th Anniversary we honor Dr. Fulkerson’s service to Western Illinois University by establishing the Frank E. Fulkerson, Outstanding Alum Award on April 16, 2011. An Outstanding Alum is selected based upon the following characteristics.

  1. The Outstanding Alum (OA) must have earned a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Specialist degree from the Department of Psychology at Western Illinois University
  2. The OA must demonstrate a high level of professional accomplishments and service to their community. Evidence of community service can include, but is not limited to, volunteer work within the nominee’s community (e.g., local civic or religious organizations such as the YMCA, Red Cross, etc.).

Nominations (pdf) and Selection Procedures

  • Nominations, including self-nominations, will be solicited widely using appropriate methods, as deemed by the Awards Committee, targeting faculty, staff, alum, and retired members of the Psychology Department.
  • The nomination process will involve the completion a brief survey delineating the nominee’s professional accomplishments since graduating with their psychology degree from Western Illinois University.
  • Nominators can put forward multiple nominees in the same year.
  • Nominees who are not selected for the current year can be nominated again in subsequent years.
  • Please send a completed copy of the OA Nomination Form (pdf) to
  • The OA will be selected by the Awards Committee of the WIU Psychology Department.

Award Process

  • The OA’s accomplishments will be highlighted on a Waggoner Hall bulletin board.
  • The award will be made at the spring Undergraduate Student Awards assembly. The OA will be invited to attend with Frank Fulkerson presenting the award.  If the OA is unable to attend the OA will simply be announced.  The WIU Psychology Department may offer to assist in defraying travel costs to the OA, at the discretion of the department.
  • A plaque for the department will be established with the name of each OA recipient and the date the award was given.
  • Each recipient will also receive a plaque designating the recipient’s name, degree and date earned from WIU, and date the OA award was received.