front entrance of Huff Hall

Phyllis J. Hill Award for Exemplary Mentoring

The "Phyllis J. Hill Award for Exemplary Mentoring" provides faculty awards in the College of Applied Health Sciences (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) who demonstrate exemplary mentoring to students enrolled in the Edmund J. James Scholar Program.

Born in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Phyllis Jo Hill (1928-2008) earned her undergraduate degree from the Oklahoma College for Women (now the University of Oklahoma College for Arts and Sciences), and a Master of Science degree at Mills College in California. In 1952, she joined the faculty at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and eventually began her studies for a Ph.D. Her dissertation topic reflected the long presence of her family in the West, a cultural history of sport in the Transmississippi region from 1673-1821. During her 25-year tenure at the University of Illinois, she served as Professor, Associate Dean and Acting Dean of the College of Applied Life Studies (now called the College of Applied Health Sciences). Dr. Hill led the college through the tumultuous years of merging the men's and women's athletic/physical education programs, which in turn required major restructuring of the academic programs, degree requirements, and standards for student academic life. She was the Director of Women's Sports before the title Director of Women's Athletics existed. Other administrative assignments at the University of Illinois included Director of the campus Peace Corps program, senate committee on student discipline, campus planning and facilities and an all-campus committee on salary equity. Upon retirement from the University of Illinois in 1977, Dr. Hill moved to her home on Lake Kegonsa in Stoughton, Wisconsin, where she served as an educator of teachers and a curriculum specialist for the March of Dimes and for the Associated Building and Contractors, under the auspices of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  She then served as Director of Education for the state Department of Corrections. Dr. Hill was especially committed to helping students achieve their greatest potential, including those she mentored through the University of Illinois Edmund J. James Scholar Program. In keeping with Dr. Hill's philosophy of teaching and her commitment to developing meaningful student-faculty relationships, this award was created to encourage and recognize faculty to follow in her footsteps.

Previous Winners

2019: Jake Sosnoff

2018: Steve Petruzzello

2017: Diana Grigsby-Toussaint

The Phyllis J. Hill Memorial Fund

If you'd like to support the fund for the Phyllis J. Hill Award for Exemplary Mentoring, please fill out the form below.

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