Meredith College mourns the loss of Professor Emerita Rosemary Hornak, who served on the psychology faculty for 34 years before retiring in 2011.
Hornak's areas of expertise were cognitive and developmental psychology. She was an experimental psychologist with high standards of rigor, trained at The Ohio State University, where she earned her master’s and doctoral degrees.
Professor of Psychology Cynthia Edwards, who serves as department head, called Hornak “a person of tremendous capacity, creative vision, high standards, voracious reading habits, and wide ranging interests.”
During her time at Meredith, Hornak was the recipient of both the Pauline Davis Perry Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Laura Harrill Presidential Award. The Laura Harrill Presidential Award is presented to faculty members in recognition of their noteworthy contributions to the advancement of Meredith.
In 1983, Hornak presented the Faculty Distinguished Lecture on Women’s Achievement: Spiral of Success.
Edwards said Hornak was an innovative teacher who worked with students on numerous research projects. Her former students are now psychologists, educators, entrepreneurs, and faculty members.
“Rosemary’s most lasting legacy was her scholarly collaboration with students,” said Edwards. “Rosemary supervised more than 80 student papers, all presented at professional meetings. A large proportion of our most distinguished psychology graduates were protégés of Rosemary Hornak.”
Alumna Jamye Hickman Lindsey, ’01, who went on to earn a Ph.D. from Georgia Tech after graduating from Meredith, said Hornak had changed her life.
“I could never thank her for all she did for me and for seeing something greater in me than I saw in myself,” Lindsey said. “She nurtured my scientific voice and taught me to embrace my power.”
Hornak is survived by her husband, Ray, and daughter Eva Hornak Snapp.
Visitation at the Bryan-Lee Funeral Home in Garner, will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday, May 20 (limited attendance to 50 persons, including family). A private graveside service will be held on Thursday, May 21, at Oakwood Cemetery, Raleigh. Because of restrictions resulting from the coronavirus, a celebration of her life will be planned for the anniversary of her passing.