Studies in Education: Juniata Provost Lakso Works Through Cases

(Posted April 8, 2013)

James Lakso will present "Cases in Collegial Conflict and the Cost of Being Different" at 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 17, in Neff Lecture Hall in the von Liebig Center for Science.

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Jim Lakso, Juniata College provost for the past 15 years and a Juniata faculty member for more than four decades, will ask others to make some administrative decisions as part of a non-lecture Bookend Lecture called "Cases in Collegial Conflict and the Cost of Being Different" at 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 17, in Neff Lecture Hall in the von Liebig Center for Science.

The talk is free and open to the public. The talk is one of a series of Bookend Lectures held once a month throughout the academic year by Juniata faculty.

"This will not be a lecture," Lakso says firmly. "People who come will be asked to discuss the facts of a case and then assume the role of a chief academic officer in making a decision."

Lakso will present three case studies. The first case will present a common conflict involving academic scheduling and intercollegiate athletic participation. Another case study will address and examine the role of "collegiality" in the process through which college professors are promoted and granted tenure. The last case asks the audience if a college and its administration should be concerned if it has a much higher percentage of faculty as full professors than comparable colleges.

Lakso received the 2005 Beachley Award for Distinguished Academic Service and the 1983 Beachley Distinguished Professor Award. He also served as an adjunct business faculty member at St. Francis University and has been a business consultant for such area businesses as Kish Bank. He remains active at St. James Lutheran Church, the Huntingdon Lions Club and Huntingdon County Business and Industry. He serves on the board for Kish Bank.

In 2010, Lakso was honored by the college and countless former students when Juniata raised almost $1 million to create the James J. Lakso Endowment for Faculty Excellence, which will provide annual funding for faculty development. In addition, the college also named its recently established teaching center the James J. Lakso Center for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning.

Lakso joined the Juniata faculty in 1970 after earning a master's degree in economics from the University of Maryland. He continued his doctoral work while teaching at Juniata and earned his doctorate in economics in 1973. He earned a bachelor's degree in economics from Wittenberg, University in 1967. Lakso was named provost in 1998 and continues to teach macroeconomics each year.

He came to Juniata as an instructor and was promoted to assistant professor in 1972 and to associate professor in 1976. He was promoted to full professor in 1981. He also has worked in administrative roles at the college, including stints as assistant academic dean, director of summer sessions, chair of the economics department and academic dean of social sciences.

He is a member of the American Economic Association and Alpha Tau Omega.

Contact John Wall at or (814) 641-3132 for more information.