Honorary Alumni Membership
is granted to persons who are not alumni, but who exemplify the ideals of achievement and service in their association with the University.
Jerry Wagenblast holds a 1962 mathematics and physics Bachelor of Science degree from the Illinois Institute of Technology and a master’s degree from IIT; he subsequently did doctoral work at Purdue University. He started his career as an instructor of mathematics at Indiana University Laboratory School in 1963. He then came to Valparaiso University and worked for 45 years until he retired from full-time teaching in 2011 at the rank of Associate Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science. During his lengthy career at Valpo, he was Chair of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science from 1983 to 1986 and was assistant dean of the College of Arts and Sciences from 1990 to 1993. He received the Valparaiso University Alumni Association’s Distinguished Teaching Award for excellence in teaching in 2000. Jerry was also the Director of the Valpo Study Centre in Cambridge, England, from 2001 to 2003. He has co-authored two mathematics texts. Jerry has put his musical talents to work: he was a church organist for a number of years and currently is a member of the Valparaiso University Bach Choir as well as the Immanuel Canticle Choir. Jerry currently volunteers with the Stephen Ministry at Immanuel Lutheran Church and has spent more than 40 summers as a participant in the American Legion Hoosier Boys State program. Jerry and his late wife, Sharon, had three children, two of whom are alumni of Valpo; Scott Wagenbalst, ’93 JD and Laurel (Wagenbalst ’92) Achen. In addition, daughter-in-law Gina (Calzaretta) Wagenbalst is a ’92 Valpo grad. And, five grandchildren wait in the wings.