Philosophy Thesis Award Honors Memory of Former Department Chair

Miller photo

Eastern Kentucky University's Department of Philosophy and Religion will award the first Dr. James Robert Miller Annual Best Philosophy Thesis Award this semester to a senior philosophy major, thanks to the generosity of family and friends of the late professor.


 The award will be given annually in May to the student who writes the academic year's best philosophy senior thesis, as selected by a committee of at least five members of the Department's faculty. The award comes with a $100 prize. Winners of the award will also have their names engraved and permanently displayed on the commemorative plaque honoring Miller that will hang in the Department's Tutoring Center/Study Lounge.


The award was established by the family of Miller, who passed away at age 83 on June 4, 2014. Miller, who taught in EKU's Department of Philosophy and Religion from 1971 until his retirement in 2001 and chaired the department, is fondly remembered as a terrific teacher, tenacious debater, and practical joker who kept his colleagues always on their toes with his antics. He was also active in the EKU Faculty Senate, serving many years as its parliamentarian.


"We are extremely grateful to Dr. Miller's family for establishing this fund, and for the generosity of his friends and loved ones," said Dr. Laura Newhart, current chair of the Department. "There should be enough funding to award the prize to the best senior philosophy thesis for the next 20 years. Hopefully, this prize will serve as an incentive for interested students to declare philosophy as a major and as a way to recognize our students' outstanding work."


A public reception for the inauguration of the Dr. James Robert Miller Annual Best Philosophy Thesis Award will be held on Friday, May 15, at 1 p.m. on the first-floor lobby of the Case Annex Building. Light refreshments will be served. Those planning to attend the reception should contact Patrick Puckett at or 859-622-1400 to make reservations.


​Anyone interested in contributing to the Dr. James Robert Miller Annual Best Philosophy Thesis Award Fund should contact EKU's Development Office at 859-622-1583.

Published on March 17, 2015

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