In memory of George Borszcz

Wayne State celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. George Borszcz.

I, along with many others in the psychology department, were deeply saddened to learn of George's passing. Some of my most vivid memories of this wonderful human being and scholar were when I first joined Wayne State University back in 1997.

When I first met George, I remember that characteristic smile and soothing voice that made me feel at ease and as though WSU could be my academic home. After several working lunches, it became very clear that I was in the presence of a master of psychology and neuroscience. George was a person of wisdom, enthusiasm, and excellent communication skills. These were impressive and fun encounters.

George with his familyGeorge was well loved by the students he taught. He taught a variety of courses including brain and behavior, neurobiology of emotion, memory and brain, learning and memory, and theories of Learning. A number of his students have gone on to careers in academia, research, and healthcare, including as clinical psychologists, physicians and nurses - a number of which he kept in touch with over the years.

The comments from students ranged from "amazing professor," "very intelligent and great instructor," to "loved being in his class and hope to have him as an instructor again." He was a leading figure in psychology and neuroscience, specifically in the science of emotion following painful experiences, and he was intrigued by the brain structures involved in the perception of pain and emotions. Indeed, his contributions to psychology and neuroscience were recognized when he was elected to fellow status in the American Psychological Association (Division 6 - Behavioral Neuroscience & Comparative Psychology).

I believe that George's legacy is a profound and lasting one. He was a fighter that never let the challenges life threw at him distract from what is really important - his students, friends and family. I am so grateful for having been able to call George my friend to the end. Just knowing him made me a better person.

George, it has been a joy and privilege to know you. You will be missed dearly.

A memorial fund has been created in George's name to support future students: George Borszcz Memorial Fund.

Scott E. Bowen, psychology professor and chair

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