Press Release

Fall 2022 Robert L. Bailey Teaching Award Recipients Announced


Sherry Mercurio
Executive Director, Office of Community Relations
(614) 947-6581

Columbus, OH (January 9, 2023)

Franklin University, one of the leading educators of working adults in central Ohio, celebrates its 172nd Commencement on Sunday, Jan. 15 at 2 p.m. (EST). Along with honoring the graduates, Franklin recognizes Stephanie Thomas and Jane Robinson from its faculty as recipients of the distinguished Robert L. Bailey Teaching Award.

Congratulations to this trimester’s recipients: Stephanie Thomas, undergraduate adjunct faculty, and Jane Robinson, graduate adjunct faculty.

Stephanie Thomas has been a Franklin University adjunct professor since 2001. Her classes are focused on scientific principles, practices and theory, as well as scientific analysis and reasoning. She also has taught English to students in China for three years and is currently a middle school STEM teacher. Stephanie’s teaching style is the same at Franklin as it is in middle school: Be engaging and encouraging.

Stephanie graduated from Norwich University in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in geology and Wright State University with a master’s degree in geophysics. Her love of teaching originates from her experience as a teaching assistant during graduate school. Stephanie ultimately earned a teaching certificate and has been teaching since 2000.   

Jane Robinson has been a Franklin University adjunct professor since 2012, teaching undergraduate and graduate business courses. Jane is committed to facilitating student success while ensuring academic standards in a collaborative and interactive learning environment. 

Jane’s career has focused on strategy and leadership of private and publicly held companies, and most recently, in the nonprofit sector. She has provided executive leadership to multifunction operations in both mid-sized and large organizations. Currently, she is engaged in community outreach activities with Columbus City Schools and Seven Baskets CDC, an organization focused on Ohio urban areas and needs. She is a board trustee for Recreation Unlimited, Ohio’s largest provider of program offerings for individuals with disabilities and health concerns; and a member of The Human Rights Committee of I Am Boundless, an organization serving the intellectual and developmental disabilities community.

About the Robert L. Bailey Teaching Award
Each trimester, two faculty members are honored with the Robert L. Bailey Teaching Award. Graduating students are asked to identify one undergraduate and one graduate faculty member who had the most significant influence on them throughout their educational experience at Franklin University. The award recognizes those who have challenged students intellectually and guided them in finding the significance of the course content as it relates to them both personally and professionally.

While more than 100 graduate and undergraduate faculty members are nominated each trimester – clearly showing the magnitude of interaction between students and faculty at Franklin University – the faculty members receiving the most nominations are awarded this honor.

These awards are funded through an endowment established by State Auto Insurance Companies in recognition of Robert L. Bailey, who served State Auto for 28 years in various positions, including President, CEO, and Chairman, until his retirement in 2000. Bailey is also a past Chair and a Trustee Emeritus of Franklin University’s Board of Trustees.

About Franklin University

Accredited, nonprofit, and dedicated to educating adults since 1902, Franklin provides onsite course options at our Main Campus in downtown Columbus, Ohio, and is an innovator in providing personalized online education. The University offers applied in-demand undergraduate, masters, and doctorate programs that enable adult learners to achieve their educational and professional goals. Through agreements with partner institutions, the University also offers international academic programs, including its top-ranked MBA.

Franklin University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and holds specialized accreditations for specific academic programs through the International Accreditation Council for Business Education, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, and the Commission on Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management Education. The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have designated Franklin University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE).

News Type

  • University