Passing: Earl C. Hagstrom

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Professor Earl C. Hagstrom died peacefully on October 16, 2016 at the age of 88. Earl was a faculty member in the Department of Psychology from 1965 until 1994. He graduated from Tufts University in 1952 and received his Ph.D. from Brown University in 1957. His graduate work with Carl Pfaffmann included some of the first systematic studies of the activity of taste fibers in the chorda tympani nerve. Earl held faculty positions at Princeton and Columbia Universities and conducted post-doctoral research at the Medical College of Virginia. He joined the faculty at the University of New Hampshire in 1965 just as the doctoral program in psychology was starting up. Earl was one of the earliest faculty members at UNH in the neurosciences. He continued to study gustatory physiology in several species and later branched out to examine EEG activity to understand the neural basis of cognitive function in human subjects. He was a popular and well-respected teacher, renown for his ability to hold pieces of chalk in both hands and simultaneously sketch anatomical structures in the left and right hemispheres of the brain. Earl served as Chair of the Psychology Department in the mid 1980s. As Chair he successfully negotiated challenging transitions as the department moved out of antiquated facilities in Conant Hall into temporary quarters in wood frame houses and then back into the newly renovated Conant Hall. Earl will be remembered for his many contributions to the Psychology Department as it grew to serve the largest undergraduate major at UNH and a graduate program with a long history of success preparing future faculty for colleges and universities across the country.

SERVICES: He will be laid to rest in a private family service. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to The Leukemia And Lymphoma Society, 9 Erie Dr., Natick, Mass., 01760.

Read obituary published in seacoastonline.

This post was written by Robert Mair, UNH Professor of Psychology

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