Dr. Robert Scheidt named next Rev. John P. Raynor Endowed Chair at Marquette 

Dr. Robert Scheidt, professor in the Marquette University and Medical College of Wisconsin Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering, has been named the next Rev. John P. Raynor, S.J. Endowed Chair, announced Kimo Ah Yun, acting president, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. The Raynor Chair is awarded on a rotating three-year cycle to a tenured faculty member who exemplifies research excellence and scholarly leadership in pursuit of the university mission. 

“Dr. Scheidt will bring to the Raynor Chair a personal record of research excellence and scholarly leadership of national and international stature,” Acting President and Provost Ah Yun said. “He will further develop and support interdisciplinary research for junior faculty, graduate students and undergraduate students in his department and several departments across campus. I look forward to seeing his plans to raise the profile of his colleagues and the university through research support and development come to fruition.” 

The Raynor Chair receives a stipend of $20,000 and up to $30,000 in operating or equipment funds each year to support their research program. It is expected that part of the operating budget will be used to execute the recipient’s planned research leadership activities.  

As Raynor Chair, Scheidt will work to help advance all three facets of the university’s strategic plan for 2031, Guided by Mission, Inspired to Change: Thriving Students, Healthy Campus, and Care for the World. His work will establish the following: 

  • The Raynor Research Roundtable for Early Faculty Development, a monthly peer review service for young faculty who may wish to receive feedback on the all-important first page of their research proposals. 
  • The NeuroEngineering and NeuroRehabilitation Research Center, a center with the vision to be a nationally recognized collaborative research center that advances innovations in neural and physical rehabilitation, with a focus on basic science research and clinical/translational applications. 
  • The Raynor Student Research Exchange, a summer student research exchange program with partners and colleagues at the University of Genoa’s Department of BioEngineering. 
  • An effort to host the National Science Foundation’s Disability and Rehabilitation Engineering Workshop at Marquette in the coming years to focus a national spotlight on the university and support its strategic plan by enhancing cross-disciplinary opportunities that engage faculty and students in exciting, emerging research areas that serve the greater needs of our human community. 

In his nomination letter for Scheidt, Dr. Frank Pintar, chair and Kern Professor of Biomedical Engineering, wrote: “Dr. Scheidt has maintained a high level of research productivity throughout his career at Marquette, as evidenced by his publication of more than 90 peer-reviewed journal and conference papers. His ongoing cross-disciplinary research activities have engaged and positively impacted Marquette faculty and students within and beyond the Opus College of Engineering. Dr. Scheidt’s plans for campus leadership are excellent and well aligned with the university’s mission and strategic plan.” 

Scheidt joined the Marquette faculty and became the founding director of the Neuromotor Control Laboratory in 2000. His research seeks to advance understanding of how the brain uses sensory information to guide motor control and learning, to understand how motor control is impaired following neural injury (e.g., stroke, concussion), and to identify effective manipulations of sensory information for re-training movement in people with control deficits. Such knowledge is important to clinicians wishing to provide therapeutic interventions that optimize functional movement after neuromotor injury.

Scheidt succeeds Dr. Kristin Haglund, professor in the College of Nursing, as Raynor Chair. Haglund was appointed in 2021 as the first Raynor Chair since 2015 when the program was paused to allow its endowment to grow. Past Raynor Chairs include Dr. Andrew Williams, Opus College of Engineering; Dr. Madeline Wake, College of Nursing; Dr. William Cullinan, College of Health Sciences; Dr. Jack Winters, Opua College of Engineering; and Dr. Quentin Quade, Klingler College of Arts and Sciences.