About Our Name - Bruce K. NelsonBruce K. Nelson

Bruce Kern Nelson (1915-2017) began a long and distinguished career of services at Eastern Michigan University in 1954.                                 

He was the director of the EMU lab school and superintendent of Lincoln Schools. He quickly assumed the role of Vice President for Instruction (equivalent to the current Provost position) and served in that capacity for 21 years. During this time, Dr. Nelson played a major role in shaping the academic structure of the University and helped facilitate the creation of the College of Education. He was responsible for registration, advising, and developing expanded class offerings to make more classes available for students.

Dr. Nelson also shepherded the building of the then "new" library, which has now been transformed into the Porter Building. In 1975, Dr. Nelson returned to his professorship in the Department of Educational Leadership. He retired in 1981.

In tribute to Dr. Nelson's work and in particular his devotion to the needs of faculty, the Faculty Development Center was renamed "The Bruce K. Nelson Faculty Development Center" at a large and successful celebration of Dr. Nelson's life and work in March 2005. The funds raised in connection with this event have provided for a renovation of the space that the center occupies in the Halle Library. The renovation makes it possible to provide small group technology instruction, flexible seating for small group meetings, and a quiet study/reading area for faculty. The EMU Foundation, a large number of emeritus faculty, and the Provost's Office have graciously made this renovation possible.

At the age of 101, Dr. Nelson passed away peacefully in his sleep on September, 22nd 2017.  Additional information about Bruce's rich and full life can be read in his obituary.