Arts and Science welcomes 37 new full-time faculty
The College of Arts and Science was pleased to welcome 37 new, full-time faculty members this year. These scholars hail from top universities around the world and represent some of the most innovative thinking and cutting-edge research in their respective fields.
Their work ranges from Matthew Congdon’s study of moral psychology and metaethics to Kristin Fauria’s work on the multi-phase dynamic flow of volcanic systems to John Sides’ study of political behavior in America. We look forward to seeing them inspire a new generation of students and move their fields forward.
Please help us welcome our new full-time faculty members:
Brian Beach, assistant professor of economics, earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh in 2015. His research spans the fields of economic history, public economics, and health—with much of his work examining the extent to which government policies and institutions affect social welfare.
Henry (Yi-Wei) Chan, senior lecturer in mathematics, earned his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 2017. His research program involves algebraic topology.
Divya Chaudhry, lecturer in Asian studies, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Florida, Gainsville, in 2016. Her research interests include language pedagogy, Hindi conversation analysis, interactional and intercultural competencies by learners of Hindi-Urdu, and language teaching professional development.
Ibby Cizmar, assistant professor of theatre, earned her Ph.D. from Tufts University in 2017. Cizmar’s primary research focuses on Ernie McClintock (1937-2003), a prolific director, producer, and educator of the 1960s Black Arts Movement who pioneered a genre of directorial practices and acting technique known as Jazz Acting.
Gabriel Torres Colón, assistant professor of anthropology, earned his Ph.D. from the University of New Mexico in 2008. Torres Colón is a cultural anthropologist with research and teaching interests in race, politics, sports, and intellectual history.
Matthew Congdon, assistant professor of philosophy, earned his Ph.D. from The New School for Social Research in 2014. His core areas of research are ethics (primarily moral psychology and metaethics), social philosophy, feminist philosophy, and the intersection of ethics and epistemology.
Cesar Ignacio “Iggy” Cortez, Mellon Assistant Professor of Cinema and Media Arts, earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2018. His research and teaching interests include world art cinemas; critical race studies; the visual and sensory culture of digital media; and questions of sexuality, cinematic performance, and embodiment.
Cassy Dorff, assistant professor of political science, earned her Ph.D. from Duke University in 2015. Her research uncovers patterns of how people engage with and respond to political conflict.
Rebecca Epstein-Levi, Mellon Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in 2017. Her book project examines the moral and textual implications of treating sex as one species of social interaction among many, and uses sex as a way to think of risk as a moral category.
Kristen Fauria, assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences, earned her Ph.D. from the University of California-Berkeley in 2017. Fauria studies multi-phase flow dynamics with an emphasis on volcanic systems.
José Gil-Férez, senior lecturer in mathematics, earned his Ph.D. from University of Cagliari in 2015. His research program is in algebraic logic.
Jessica Gilpin, senior lecturer in biological sciences, earned her Ph.D. from Auburn University in 2019. She has teaching experience in a variety of laboratory courses, including: anatomy and physiology, ecology, histology, vertebrate development, and honors research methods. Her research interests are biology, with an emphasis on marine ecology.
Gilbert Gonzales, assistant professor of medicine, health, and society and assistant professor of public policy studies, earned his Ph.D. from the Minnesota School of Public Health in 2015. His primary scope of research examines how public policies affect health and access to care for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender populations.
Mazalit Haim, assistant professor of the practice of Jewish studies, earned her Ph.D. from New York University in 2019. Her research engages with modern Jewish manifestations of hope and despair, focusing on their interplay within secular and religious texts and cultural phenomena.
Diana Heney, assistant professor of philosophy, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Toronto in 2014. Heney is a specialist in ethics, including bioethics, and in the history of American pragmatism. Her current research projects concern the ethics of mental health care, along with the history of developments in ethical theory in America.
Malin Hu, assistant professor of economics, earned her Ph.D. from Cornell University in 2019. Hu is an applied macroeconomist with interests in household consumption, consumer finance, and the U.S. housing and mortgage markets.
Nozomi Imai, lecturer in Asian studies, earned her M.A. from Indiana University in 2019. While pursuing her degree, Imai worked on topics ranging from corrective feedback and classroom instruction of Japanese onomatopoeia to loanword acquisition.
Antonia Kaczkurkin, assistant professor of psychology, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota in 2014. Her research focuses on understanding the neurobiological mechanisms that contribute to the etiology of internalizing disorders.
Eunji Kim, assistant professor of political science, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2019. Kim studies American public opinion, political communication, and political psychology, with a focus on economic mobility and income inequality.
Emily Lordi, associate professor of English, earned her Ph.D. from Columbia University in 2009. She is a writer, professor, and cultural critic whose focus is African American literature and black popular music.
Alice Mark, senior lecturer in mathematics, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Texas, Austin in 2015. Her research program is in algebraic structures with associated geometric properties.
Ashleigh Maxcey, senior lecturer in psychology and research assistant professor, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Iowa in 2009. Maxcey studies recognition-induced forgetting, a unique form of forgetting characterized by failure to recall seeing or hearing objects or events that accompany focused attention of a given object or event of interest.
Adeana McNicholl, assistant professor of religious studies, earned her Ph.D. from Stanford University in 2019. McNicholl specializes in early South Asian Buddhism and American Buddhism, with research focused on the relationship between religion, the body, and embodied identities such as race, gender, and sexuality.
Analisa Packham, assistant professor of economics, earned her Ph.D. from Texas A&M in 2016. Packham is an applied macroeconomist with interests in health and education policy, whose research focuses on the effects of contraception and family planning access on teen childbearing and the effects of nutritional assistance receipt on crime and academic achievement.
Danielle Picard, senior lecturer in medicine, health, and society, earned her Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University in 2019. She is a historian of science and medicine specializing in the development of the human sciences during the twentieth century.
Sarah Quincy, assistant professor of economics, earned her Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis in 2019. She is an economic historian working on American macroeconomics and financial history, with particular emphasis on the distributional implications of financial crises.
Anthony Reed, associate professor of English, earned his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 2011. His research interests broadly concern the intersection of twentieth century and contemporary black poetry, aesthetics, and politics.
Jessie Runnoe, assistant professor of physics and astronomy, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Wyoming in 2013. Runnoe’s research program focuses on the feeding habits of supermassive black holes, visible to us as quasars.
Hideko Shimizu, senior lecturer in Asian studies, earned her degree from the University of Denver in 1999. Her research interests are on attitudes toward teaching and learning vocabulary and kanji, second language acquisition, and social networking approach in Japanese and foreign language education.
John Sides, professor of political science, earned his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 2003. Sides studies political behavior in America and comparative politics.
Stephen Taylor, assistant professor of physics and astronomy, earned his Ph.D. from Cambridge University in 2014. His research studies what we can learn about extreme astrophysical systems of black holes and neutron stars from gravitational wave observations.
Lesley Turner, associate professor of economics, earned her Ph.D. from Columbia University in 2012. Turner’s research broadly considers the roles that government should play in providing and financing education.
Danyelle Valentine, assistant professor of women’s and gender studies, earned her Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University in 2019. She studies American rhetoric surrounding the terms “colonization” and “emigration,” along with the labor and cultivation conditions of Free Black communities in Nova Scotia, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York.
Laurel Waycott, Mellon Assistant Professor of Communication of Science and Technology, earned her Ph.D. from Yale University in 2019. Waycott studies the history of science; the intersection of the world of craft and the world of science; how patterns came to be used in science; and the intersection of art, science, and culture.
Meredyth Wegener, senior lecturer in neuroscience, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh in 2017. Her graduate work explored the manner in which learning and diet impact the firing of neurons in the brain that release the neurotransmitter dopamine.
Caroline Randall Williams, Writer-in-Residence in medicine, health, and society, earned her M.F.A. from the University of Mississippi in 2015. As a poet, essayist, and cookbook author, she works to create texts and raise questions that examine how the lived-in body both inspires and becomes its own text in the world.
Laurie Woods, senior lecturer in sociology, earned her Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University in 2008. Her teaching and research interests include social problems, criminal justice/law enforcement, hate crimes, and gun proliferation and control.