Janet Goldenstein Ahler, Profesor Emerita of Educational Foundations and Research, passed away on April 23, 2019 after a long illness. She leaves a son, Scott and a granddaughter, Aliyah.
Jan had a Bachelor and Masters degree from the University of Nebraska and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Missouri.
Jan was an early faculty appointment to the internationally known Center for Teaching and Learning, established by Dean Vito Perrone in 1972; she went on to become a charter member of the Department of Educational Foundations and Research with Professors Williams, Landry and Gershman in the early 1990s. She designed and taught the course, “Multicultural Education” that became a pillar in the progressive philosophy of the teacher education program in CTL.
Jan was a long time member of the Plains Anthropology Association, the Association of Anthropology and Education and the American Educational Research Association. She was a recognized scholar of Native American Studies with a specialty in North Dakota Tribes. She was commissioned by the North Dakota Centennial Commission to write a curriculum on North Dakota Native Americans for use in all public elementary schools in the state and was instrumental in requiring coursework in that area for all preservice teachers for state licensure.
She was a feminist, a social activist, and a fierce defender of Native American rights, with a vast network of family and friends across all five tribes in the state. She mentored many dozens of graduate students in the art and science of qualitative research; their tributes for her role in their graduate studies are moving for her family and colleagues to read. Jan’s Anishnaabe name was Wassanamiwa.
A memorial service for Jan is scheduled for 1 p.m. Sunday, June 30, at the Gorecki Alumni Center.