Sairah Aslam | Staff Writer
Ronald C. Arnett, chair and professor of the Department of Communication & Rhetorical Studies, was inaugurated as a Distinguished Scholar in the National Communication Association (NCA) at the organization’s 103rd annual convention.
It is a select, scholarly award considering that nominees must be nominated by members. The award, which was created in 1991 “to recognize and reward NCA members for a lifetime of scholarly achievement in the study of human communication,” is only given to three to five people annually, according to the organization’s website.
Arnett expressed gratitude for a campus environment that encourages his work and promotes issues that he sees as valuable.
“I’m very thankful to Duquesne for the research support I received here … and that [I work at] a university that has decided to push the envelope around issues that matter, specifically ethics,” Arnett said.
For a candidate to be selected by the group, his or her works must significantly contribute to several core topics: the philosophy of communication, religious communication and communication in ethics. These are all topics that, Arnett said, “prompt us to look at issues … that matter, issues that sometimes unite us and sometimes divide us.”
The Distinguished Scholar Award is Arnett’s jewel in the proverbial crown. Arnett’s publications are numerous: Since 1980, he has published 11 books, four edited manuscripts, 33 book chapters and 90 articles.
According to his biography posted online by the university, he was previously the inaugural holder of the Henry Koren, C.S.Sp., Endowed Chair for Scholarly Excellence from 2010-2015; the recipient of the 2013 Duquesne University Presidential Award for Excellence in Scholarships; and was also the recipient of the 2005 Scholar of the Year Award from the Religious Communication Association.
Currently, he is the inaugural holder of the Patricia Doherty Yoder and Ronald Wolfe Chair, established in 2015.
The Distinguished Scholar Award going to Arnett is something that President Ken Gormley thinks the entire campus community should be proud of.
“This award constitutes well-deserved recognition of Arnett’s outstanding scholarly record and brings honor to the entire Duquesne University community. We are very grateful for Arnett’s academic leadership on this campus and are extremely proud to witness this professional tribute to his work by his peers in the National Communication Association,” Gormley said in the Duquesne University Times.