In Time of Loss, Colleagues Reflect On Impact of Retired Faculty Member

Sue Spaulding, long-time member of the Department of Psychology (now Psychological Science) at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, died suddenly on December 5, 2018. An avid and fearless traveler, she was doing what she loved most—cruising the sunny tropics. Spaulding was hired as lab director in 1993 and served the department in a variety of roles until her retirement in 2014.

In her role as undergraduate coordinator, she helped to redesign the curriculum and led changes to the advising process in order to better serve the rapidly increasing numbers of majors and minors throughout the 1990s and early 2000’s. She helped create the PASS (Psychology Advising for Student Success) Center and served as its director for many years.  She served as co-coordinator of the Psychology Learning Community, and was a co-author of several papers and professional presentations on the impact of learning communities on student success.

Spaulding was especially committed to the success of transfer students, and created and taught one of the university’s first courses focused exclusively on this often overlooked population. For many years, she was responsible for developing and implementing the psychology lab curriculum through the training and supervision of the many graduate students who taught the dozens of sections of psychology labs each year.  She was famous for her homemade barbecue, and brought a large pot of it to every department party or graduate student training event she attended or hosted.

She will be remembered by her colleagues as a strong proponent of the undergraduate psychology major, and former students will remember her as a stanch advocate of student success and retention.