Ed Jones first recipient of M. Edward Jones Engagement Award


M. Edward Jones, vice provost emeritus for the University of Southern Indiana’s Outreach and Engagement, has been named the inaugural recipient of the M. Edward Jones Engagement Award. The new annual award was announced during Outreach and Engagement’s Celebration of Engagement event and is given to an individual, group or project for excellence in leadership, commitment to quality, tireless service and dedication to lifelong learning in fulfilling the outreach mission of USI.

Jones, founding director of Continuing Education (now Outreach and Engagement), was a key player in creating and expanding outreach efforts during his career at USI from 1974 to 2010. His endeavors bolstered the growth and reach of programs offered by Outreach and Engagement, which had a total enrollment of 202 in 1974, and currently enjoys an annual enrollment of more than 15,000 participants.

“I was extremely pleased to be able to present the award to Ed,” said Linda Cleek, executive director of Lifelong Learning in Outreach and Engagement. “He’s the finest mentor anyone could imagine. Many people talk about how David Rice was the right person, in the right place, at the right time. The same can be said of Ed Jones.”

His contributions can be seen, not only through the success of the department, but across the University. The Intensive English Program and University Division both were born from ideas set in motion by Jones. He played a critical role in establishing USI’s Bachelor of General Studies program, chaired the Concept Committee for a new Science and Engineering Building and a new library on campus, and coordinated development of USI’s Distance Learning Program. He introduced the College Achievement Program (CAP), collaborated with the English Department for the RopeWalk Writers Retreat and the Psychology Department for the Mid-America Conference for Teachers of Psychology.

Jones fostered relationships with businesses and community and broadened the breadth of Outreach and Engagement partnerships. Implementation of a Center for Total Quality Management and a customized on-site version of the Master’s in Industrial Management Degree for regional employers both began under his leadership.

Jones holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Brescia College, and a master’s degree in education and a doctorate in higher education administration, both from Indiana University. He served as assistant  dean in the School of Continuing Studies at Northwestern University from 1972-74 before coming to USI. During his career, he was involved with numerous professional and community organizations including the University Professional and Continuing Education Association, which awarded him the Walter Bittner Citation for Outstanding Service in 2000.