Interests in Music, Philosophy, Math and More
MELBOURNE, FLA. — Robert Shearer, a 35-year faculty member at Florida Institute of Technology whose interests in philosophy and mathematics, music and literature made him a Renaissance man on campus, died Sunday, Sept. 18.
“We are not likely to see someone like him again,” said Robert Taylor, the head of the School of Arts and Communication, where Shearer served as an associate professor since 1981.
Recently recognized by Florida Tech President T. Dwayne McCay as one of a small number of faculty who served under all five of Florida Tech’s presidents, Shearer sought to strengthen and improve Florid Tech even as he did the same with his students. A former president of the Faculty Senate, he then served for more than a decade as secretary of that body.
“It was a pleasure to work with him in the Senate,” said Marc Baarmand, a professor of physics and space sciences and the 2016 Faculty Senate president elect, “and a joy to chat about philosophy and metaphysics. He will be sorely missed.”
Known for playing concert piano every year at Florida Tech’s Honors Convocation, often featuring his own compositions, Shearer was an award-winning teacher, as well.
Shearer won the Faculty Excellence Award for Teaching.
Gordon Patterson, a professor of history who worked with Shearer in the College of Psychology and Liberal Arts, called his colleague “an original.”
“He played many parts,” Patterson said. “He was a virtuoso pianist, a novelist, a philosopher, a teacher, a colleague, and to those of us who knew him – a friend.”
An on-campus memorial service for Shearer will be held at 3 p.m. Oct. 7 at the All Faiths Center.