Longtime St. Thomas professor inducted into Minnesota Science and Technology Hall of Fame


Longtime St. Thomas professor inducted into Minnesota Science and Technology Hall of Fame

Dr. Bernice “Bernie” Folz, a longtime professor at St. Thomas and founder of Graduate Programs in Software, will be honored by the Minnesota High Tech Association and the Science Museum of Minnesota tonight at the ninth annual Tekne Awards ceremony. She is among 10 individuals who will be inducted into the Minnesota Science and Technology Hall of Fame.

Dr. Bernice Folz

Folz and her nine fellow inductees are the first class to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. This special honor recognizes “Minnesotans whose achievements in science and technology have made a lasting impact not only in the state of Minnesota but globally as well.”

The winner of the 1998 Lifetime Achievement Award from the MHTA, Folz joined St. Thomas in 1978 and has worked in the computer and technology industry for more than 40 years. She became chair of the undergraduate Quantitative Methods and Computer Science Department in 1980 and founded GPS five years later. In 1991-92, the program became its own department.

Folz now teaches doctoral-level management and educational technology courses with two online universities. Her busy retirement schedule also includes her work as a tour guide with the Minneapolis Institute of Art, a volunteer – creating Ikebana flower arrangements for Twin Cities events – for the Sogetsu Ikebana International Society, an advisory board member of the Chamber Music Society of Minnesota and a board member for the Center for Senior Citizens’ Education at St. Thomas.

William C. Norris, longtime friend of St. Thomas, founder of Opus College of Business’ William C. Norris Institute and founder of Control Data Corp., also is among the 10 inductees. In 2001 he received a lifetime achievement Tekne Award from the MHTA and Minnesota Technology Inc. Norris died in 2006.

A selection panel comprised of leaders in the academic and business sectors helped choose the 10 award recipients.

The Hall of Fame can be seen at www.MSTHallofFame.org; it soon will be a permanent exhibit at the Science Museum of Minnesota in downtown St. Paul.