40 Years and 1,590 Graduate Students


In July 1967, a new job description was written to create a position in the Mathematics Department "to serve as secretary to Professors M. S. Webster, Robert E. Zink, and Meyer Jerison, administrators of the graduate student program in Mathematics, and receptionist for the 6th floor of the new Division of Mathematical Sciences building." The positions was filled, but in June 1968 the department was faced with finding a replacement for the first incumbent, who resigned after less than a year on the job.

Fortunately, a few weeks earlier Nancy Fisher's Lafayette Jefferson High School typing class had made the rounds of potential employers in the Lafayette area, including Purdue University; the students visited the personnel office and filled out job applications. When Nancy received a phone call from Purdue just days before graduation, she was prepared to interview and go to work. Professor Webster was so impressed with Nancy that he offered her the job and asked her to begin training for the position immediately—prior to her high school commencement!

The rest is history . . . in June 2008, Nancy Fisher Eberle celebrated 40 years with Purdue University and the Department of Mathematics. For decades, Nancy has managed the operation of the graduate office and implemented the policies and procedures of the Graduate School. She has acted as the department's graduate admissions and registration official and has served as counselor to graduate students and faculty.

On December 9, 2004, Nancy received the Eudoxia Girard Martin Memorial Staff Recognition Award, the university's highest staff recognition