Michael Saffle, professor of music and humanities in the Department of Religion and Culture in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, has received the university's 2012 Alumni Award for Excellence in International Research.
Sponsored by the Virginia Tech Alumni Association, the Alumni Award for Excellence in International Research is presented annually to a faculty or staff member who has had a significant impact on international research at Virginia Tech. Selection is based on contributions to the internationalization of Virginia Tech, global impact, significance of the project, and sustainability of the project. Recipients are awarded $2,000.
During his 33-year career at the university, Saffle has built an impressive, extensive, and varied list of scholarly accomplishments, many of them having international connections. A renowned scholar of composer Franz Liszt (1811-1886), Saffle has been a part of hundreds of publications and presentations, and has earned national and international accolades.
Saffle has authored three editions of an internationally acclaimed Liszt research guide, published by Routledge Press. His career includes two Fulbright Scholarships (one a “Distinguished European Chair”), and two Humboldt Fellowships, as well as awards from the Rockefeller Foundation and the American Philosophical Society.
In 2006, Saffle received one of the top honors in his in his field: a commemorative collection of essays published as an issue of the e-journal Spaces of Identity. The publication was titled The Sound of Interdisciplinarity: For Michael Saffle. It included contributions by individuals from Austria, Canada, Italy, Hong Kong, and the United Kingdom, as well as the United States.
Saffle’s research has enabled him to collaborate with musicologists and other scholars from around the world. He has been instrumental in arranging more than 10 international conferences and has been the general editor of the Franz Liszt Studies Series, an international collaborative work.
“Michael is a meticulous researcher and has done extensive research in international archives,” said Peter Schmitthenner, chair of the department. “While collaborating with other established scholars, he has also fostered the continuance of scholarship in his fields of expertise by mentoring emerging scholars. We are indeed fortunate to have in Michael such a distinguished humanities scholar representing Virginia Tech to various parts of the globe.”
Saffle received a bachelor's degree from the University of Utah, a master's degree from Boston University, a master's degree from Harvard University, and a Ph.D. from Stanford University.