At the beginning of each new academic year, I look back on what we have accomplished and forward to what exciting opportunities are arising for us to “connect the arts and humanities to the everyday life of the community.”
This year, though, I am particularly excited about the new talent joining our faculty. After several years of budget cutting, we can finally breathe a little and build our programs again, and these are the faces of our bright future.
Dr. Kate Mulry, Assistant Professor of American history, specializes in Atlantic Studies. Her BA is from Princeton University, and her PhD from New York University. She comes to us from Haverford College, where she has been Visiting Assistant Professor.
Dr. Stephen Allen, Assistant Professor of Latin American history, studies sport and masculinities in Mexico. He has a BS with honors from Bowling Green State University, an MA from Temple University, and a PhD from Rutgers University. He has most recently been a Visiting Lecturer in History at Boise State University.
Dr. Nate Olson, Assistant Professor of Philosophy with a specialty in applied ethics, has a BA in Philosophy and English from St. Olaf College in Minnesota, and an MA and PhD in Philosophy from Georgetown University. He comes to us after serving as a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow in the Thinking Matters Program at Stanford University.
Dr. Angel Vazquez-Ramos is our new Assistant Professor and Choral Director in the Music Department. His Bachelor of Music is from the University of Puerto Rico, and his Master of Music Education and PhD in Choral Music Education are from Florida State University. He comes to us from Chapman University, where he has been Assistant Professor and Director of Choral Music Education since 2010.
Dr. Dustin Knepp, Associate Professor of Spanish, joins us as both the Director of Interdisciplinary Studies and as Interim Chair of Modern Languages and Literatures. He has a BA in Spanish from Angelo State University, an MA in Spanish and Hispanic Culture from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and a PhD in Spanish, Latin American, Caribbean, and US Latino Cultural Studies from the State University of New York at Albany. He comes to us from the University of Central Arkansas, where he was the program director of Latin American and Latino Studies.
And finally, I am happy to announce that Dr. Liora Gubkin, who was recently promoted to Full Professor of Religious Studies, is the new (and actually the first) Associate Dean of Arts and Humanities. She will take on several responsibilities having to do with the A&H Student Center (advising, tutoring, recruitment, and student success in general), as well as curricular concerns having to do with the quarter-to-semester conversion and the new General Education program, among many other fascinating challenges.
Stay tuned to our blog, AHA!: Arts and Humanities Alive for the latest in what is happening as we continue to connect and celebrate.
Have a great year!
Dr. Robert Frakes
Dean of the School of Arts & Humanities