Angela Schwendiman Recognized for Her Outstanding Work at EWU

February 9, 2023

Angela Schwendiman, director of Africana Studies at EWU, was honored Feb. 8 for her more than two decades of visionary leadership during a Hip Hop Civics Education event at Showalter Auditorium.

Schwendiman, who is also a senior lecturer in EWU’s Africana Studies, is the first African American woman to serve as an assistant dean for the university’s College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.

During the event, Eastern President Shari McMahan presented Schwendiman with a certificate celebrating her many accomplishments and contributions. “When we think of Angela, we think of her commitment to our students, her joy and passion for teaching, her outstanding work in the community and her visionary leadership,” McMahan said.

This year’s calendar of events for Black History Month is an example of Schwendiman’s unique ability to collaborate across departments to enrich the educational experience for students. Schwendiman’s success in bringing author and lecturer Brettina L. Love to campus for the Love Hip-Hop Civics Education event is just one example of how Schwendiman is successfully expanding education opportunities for students while providing important resources for educators.

Love, the William F. Russell Professor at Teachers College, Columbia University, is a researcher, author and education advocate. During Wednesday’s lecture, Love dynamically illustrated the complexities of African American life and history while citing the innumerable contributions in music, art and other fields by Black artists, athletes and intellectuals. These contributions have had widespread influence on American society even as they convey deeply meaningful messages, movements and experiences, Love said. (Visit Love’s Get Free Hip Hop Civics Ed website for educational resources.) See more about Love’s visit here on KHQ.

Schwendiman’s own journey to make an impact at Eastern began as a student. She graduated in 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in electronic media and film. She next earned a master’s degree in college instruction with an emphasis in electronic media and film in 2003.

In 2004, Schwendiman joined the EWU film studies faculty. Over the years, she became a widely respected scholar and instructor in what was then called African American studies, helping students grapple with the multifaceted aspects of Black life, history and culture. Her classes have explored expressionism, family, cinema, the Black power movement, abolitionism and other deeply relevant topics.

When Covid-19 hit and EWU instructors and students were forced to transition to remote-learning, Schwendiman took on the difficult role of director of Faculty Commons. From 2020-2022, she put her technological expertise and broadcast experience to work, along with her skills in managing programs and facilitating training, to support faculty and create a better experience for Eastern students.

In July of 2021, Schwendiman accepted the position as director of EWU’s Africana Studies Program and in September of 2022 took on the role of assistant dean of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.