Joan Emily Herwig

Honored by:Mary E. Sterling
Brick location:A:20  map

Joan Herwig joined the faculty in Child Development (now Human Development and Family Studies) at Iowa State University in 1971 where she served until retiring in 2003 as Associate Professor Emeritus. Prior to joining the faculty, she attended Merrill Palmer Institute, Detroit, Michigan (1964), earned a B.S. in Home Economics Education from University of Wisconsin-Stout (1965), an M.S. in Child Development from Iowa State University (1971), and Ph.D. in Child Development from Purdue University (1978). She was a Fulbright Scholar to India (1991-1992).

Joan taught in the Port Huron Public Schools, Port Huron, Michigan, and the first summer Head Start programs (1965-1969) and was director/teacher (1969). Her academic career at Iowa State included Child Development chairperson (1983-1986), Child Development Laboratory School Director (1994-2002) during the creation of the James and Barbara Palmer Human Development and Family Studies Building on central campus. She provided leadership for the first Gold Seal Award for the Child Development Laboratory School (2001) and National Association of Young Children accreditation (1996) for the laboratory school, and the Iowa Department of Education Committees for Iowa Standards for Programs for 4-year-olds and the UNI Regents Center for Early Childhood Education for the preschool children of Iowa. Her research focused on young children’s cognition and learning.

She received many professional recognitions for her nurturing of and advocacy for young children as well as undergraduate and graduate teaching, research and advising over her long service at Iowa State. She served as major professor for many international as well as domestic students, and mentor beyond their graduation. Recognitions included the Amoco Outstanding Teaching Award (1982), Outstanding Academic Advisor from the ISU Student Alumni Association (1982), Distinguished Alumni Award University of Wisconsin Stout (1985), U.S./China Early Childhood Joint Conference, Beijing (1993). Joan was president of the Iowa and Midwest Associations for the Education of Young Children, National Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators and was one of the first academic validators for the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs, Washington, D.C. In retirement, her engagements and leadership continued through Friendship Force of Central Iowa, OLLI, and the Green Hills Retirement Community.