Beloved Emeritus Professor/Registrar, Sam Schaff, Dies
Posted: April 19, 2000
Professor Emeritus Samuel D. Schaff, Ed.D., died Saturday, April 15, 2000, at Licking Memorial Hospital following a lengthy illness. A memorial service will be held at First Baptist Church, 115 West Broadway in Granville, on Thursday, April 20, at 11:30 a.m. A private graveside service will be held in the College Cemetery. The McPeek Funeral Home in Granville is in charge of arrangements.
Dr. Schaff, who was Professor Emeritus of Education and retired Registrar, became a well-known and beloved figure during his 34 years at Denison, from 1948 to 1982.
Dr. Schaff was born December 16, 1912, in Pataskala, Ohio, to the late Val F. and Maude Bowers Schaff. He received his B.A. degree from Denison in 1938, his M.A. from The Ohio State University in 1942, and his Ed.D. from Columbia University in 1954. He was a member of several honorary societies including Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Society, Omicron Delta Kappa, and Phi Delta Kappa at Columbia University.
Before teaching at Denison, Dr. Schaff taught in both public and private elementary and secondary schools as well as Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa. While at Denison, he served as Chair of the Education Department. He was Past-President of the Midwest Association of Pre-Law Advisors and served on the Executive Committee of the Central Association of Advisors of Health Professions.
Dr. Schaff began his Denison career in 1948 as an Instructor in the Department of Education. In 1951, he took a leave of absence to pursue a doctoral degree in education at Columbia University; the degree was granted in 1954. In 1956, he served as Acting Chairman of the Department of Education and Assistant to the Dean of the College. In 1957, he was appointed Associate Professor of Education, and for the next eight years he served as Director of Testing and Vocational Services, culminating in the appointment as Registrar and Professional School Advisor in 1965. That same year, he was named Professor of Education?a rare distinction for an administrator who had departed from the faculty ranks. In 1978, Sam was elected into the alumni membership in Phi Beta Kappa. He retired as Registrar in 1978 but continued in his role as Professional School Advisor for the next four years. Larry Murdock, Registrar, reflects "Sam Schaff was probably Denison?s most beloved administrator. Many, many students credit their admission to prestigious graduate programs and their eventual success in the professional world to his efforts."
Dr. Schaff is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Mary Ruth Schaff, M.D., and Patrick L. Doddy of Chicago; and his son and daughter-in-law, Val and Amy Schaff of Lenexa, Kansas. He was preceded in death by his wife, Ruth Gausman Schaff, who died July 21,1997, and by two brothers, Robert Lee and Richard.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Samuel D. Schaff Scholarship Fund (P.O. Box D, Denison University,43023).
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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