On May 2, 2018, President Isiaah Crawford, members of the campus community, and friends of the university gathered for a special Asian Studies Celebration to announce the creation of The Suzanne Wilson Barnett Chair of Contemporary China Studies.
The new endowed faculty position is named for Professor Emerita of History Suzanne Wilson Barnett.
“The new chair and the enhanced focus on China will grow Puget Sound’s international reputation in the interdisciplinary study of Asian societies, where we already excel,” said President Crawford. “Faculty and students across a range of disciplines will gain new opportunities for research abroad, for creating transpacific partnerships, and for establishing themselves as authorities in a dynamic and thriving region that is growing at more than twice the rate of the United States. It is an exciting time in the Pacific Rim and an important moment in the history of Puget Sound.”
Barnett, who taught at Puget Sound from 1973 to 2007, was a central figure in the launch of the Asian Studies Program more than 40 years ago. A Harvard University graduate, exceptional teacher, and respected scholar, she shared her enthusiasm for Chinese history and for disciplined, effective writing with hundreds of students throughout her distinguished career at Puget Sound.
The Suzanne Wilson Barnett Chair of Contemporary China Studies has been established through a gift from The Trimble Foundation. The Trimble Foundation and Trimble family, which have long-standing personal connections to China, have made numerous gifts to Puget Sound, supporting student scholarships, faculty exchanges, visiting scholars, and capital projects critical to the college’s educational mission.