Keith N. Fargo is the recipient of the Indiana University East 2009 Distinguished Alumni Award. Fargo will receive the honorary award during the IU East commencement ceremony at 6 p.m. on Friday, May 15. The ceremony is being held at the Richmond High School Tiernan Center. He will lead the graduating class during the alumni induction ceremony.
The IU East Distinguished Alumni Award provides an opportunity to recognize outstanding IU East alumni who have distinguished themselves through personal and professional accomplishments, community service, involvement with the university and involvement with the alumni association.
“I am both honored and delighted! My time at IU East was one of the most influential periods of my life, and I carry memories from those years with me every day. I really couldn’t be happier to be chosen for this award,” Fargo said.
Fargo, a resident of Naperville, Ill., received a Bachelor of Science degree in Behavioral Sciences with a concentration in Psychology from IU East in 1997. He graduated with highest distinction and was the Naomi R. Osborne Scholar, an honor given to the graduate with the highest grade point average. He is a previous resident of New Castle, Ind.
After completing his degree, Fargo was a post-baccalaureate student at the University of Cincinnati in 1998. Then in 2006, he earned his Ph.D. in Neural Science and in Psychological and Brain Sciences from Indiana University. Fargo was the Chancellor’s Fellow and a National Research Service Award (NRSA) trainee.
Fargo would go on to the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine and Hines VA Hospital to complete his postdoctoral training as a Ruth L. Kirschtein Individual NRSA Postdoctoral Fellow. While there, his research was focused on molecular neurobiology.
Currently, Fargo is a research health scientist in the Research and Development Service of the Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital located in Hines, Ill. He has written and published several research articles and has served as an ad hoc reviewer for three scientific journals.
Fargo said he has several memories of IU East, particularly the mentorship of William F. Browne, professor of psychology and education, who is now retired.
“Dr. Browne took an interest in my education from the very first class I had with him, and he warmly shepherded me through the process of earning my degree,” Fargo said.
Fargo attributes Browne with providing several challenges and opportunities to him while a student at IU East, opportunities, he added, that are not available at larger, more traditional colleges. In addition to his professional work, Fargo is an instructor at Loyola University Chicago at the Lakeshore Campus.
“These experiences shaped my views both of science and of the process of teaching, and taught me lessons that have stuck with me to this day,” Fargo said. “In both my scientific work and my teaching, I try to emulate the warmth, integrity, and sense of excellence that Dr. Browne modeled for me at IU East. I consider his caring mentorship to be one of the great good fortunes of my life, and I am grateful IU East exists as a place where such relationships can develop and thrive.”