Retiring professor will be recognized at 175th commencement

Retiring faculty member Dan Bauer, professor of anthropology and sociology and director of Technology Clinic, has been elected to emeritus status and will be recognized at the 175th Commencement on May 22. He has been a member of the faculty for 38 years.

An expert on African and Mexican ethnography, Bauer spent 17 months living among the Tigray people in a 1,000-person village in the northern highlands of Ethiopia. His research culminated in the publication of Household and Society in Ethiopia in 1977, with a second edition in 1986, as well as numerous book chapters and articles in scholarly journals.

Bauer spent a year in the remote 2,500-person Chinantec Indian village of San Pedro Yolox in the Sierra Juarez Mountains of Oaxaca, Mexico, in 1980-81. He has made 11 subsequent trips there, documenting how a globalizing world has changed the community that once survived on household farms and coffee production. He is working on a book project focusing on his research in Mexico. Bauer also served in the Peace Corps from 1962-64, living among the native Aymará people of Peru. He taught auto mechanics at a local trade school and installed water pumps in village wells. He also taught English at a nearby university.

Bauer joined the faculty as an assistant professor in 1972 and was promoted to associate professor in 1978 and to full professor in 1999. He served as assistant to the dean of the faculty from 1978 to 1980, as department head from 1986 to 1998, and as the founding director of Technology Clinic from 1986 to 2010.

Technology Clinic brings students from different majors together to help solve the real-world problems of business firms, nonprofit organizations, and government agencies. Through the course, Bauer has worked with hundreds of students on projects focusing on environmental improvements in Easton’s West Ward neighborhood, Easton’s flooding issues, regional economic development, and many more.

Bauer received the College’s Marquis Distinguished Teaching Award in 1996 and a Mellon Research Fellowship in 1980-81. He is the former chapter president of Sigma Xi, the scientific research society, and the American Association of University Professors. He holds a doctorate in social anthropology from the University of Rochester and a bachelor of arts degree in social science and journalism from San José State University.