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Susan Standiford

Susan Standiford

Chief technology officer | IKEA Group | Class of 1989

To the faculty member who opened her eyes to the fascinating world of archaeology, Susan Standiford can’t say thank you enough.

“The person who had a profound effect on me at the U of I was Professor David Grove in the anthropology department,” says the Class of '89 grad, now IKEA’s London-based chief technology officer.

“I was doing my work in math and computer science at the time, and someone told me about his Anthro 105 course that had a cool — and very unique at the time — program that would model out an archaeological dig as part of the curriculum.

“So, I took the class and and ended up falling in love with anthropology and archaeology. Dr. Grove was amazing and taught me a love for a subject that was new and interesting to me.

“In fact, a few years ago I traveled through Mexico to visit some of the sites that he had introduced to me, and they were amazing to visit in person. I was so inspired that I reached out to him and thanked him for his teaching and mentoring.

“What an impact a single professor can make in a student’s life.”