Please send your Faculty News to Mary Koski.
A.J. Juskewycz (Sociology/Anthropology/Social Welfare) gave a talk, "Christian Embattlement and Religious Minority Inclusion in American Religious Freedom Claims," at the American Sociological Association Conference in Denver. The paper uses log-linear modeling of self-coded data from newspapers from 1990-2010 to examine how diverse non-Christian religious groups are differentially engaged in new categorically intersectional, non-minoritarian forms of religious freedom claims. As a program member for the new ASA Section on Human Rights, she also served as a discussant for an authors-meet-critics session on the Handbook of Sociology and Human Rights.
OUR NEW FACULTY
Jose Boquin, Department of Chemistry
Jose Boquin is joining the chemistry faculty of Augustana College in Fall 2012. Originally from El Salvador, Jose obtained his bachelor degree from Ave Maria College of the Americas in San Marcos, Nicaragua and his doctoral degree from Baylor University in Waco, Texas. Upon completion of his Ph.D. he worked at Austin College in Sherman TX as a visiting assistant professor, teaching both the lecture and laboratory components for general and organic chemistry. His research interest is focused in the area of organic chemistry, specifically in the synthesis of organic compounds that may induce an immune response.
Jose has one older and one younger sister. His parents and siblings live in El Salvador. When not at work, he enjoys listening to music and watching movies. He is a huge fan of Italian food and has just fallen in love with the Chicago style pizza!
Alex Boyden, Department of Biology
Alex Boyden graduated from Augustana in 2006 and is thrilled to be joining the Biology Department as a visiting professor for the coming year. After reluctantly turning down an offer to start at shooting guard for the Chicago Bulls, he embarked on a more prestigious life in academia--performing influenza virus research at the University of Iowa, from which he will receive a Ph.D. in Immunology. Alex loves studying anything to d with health and medicine and is particularly fascinated by infectious disease. Learning about the ways in which bodies fight off--and co-exist--the world around us never fails to capture his imagination. In addition to his research, he had the opportunity to give some lectures, guide small group discussions on medical case-based analyses, and mentor fellow graduate students as they underwent their comprehensive exams.
When he's not sifting through infected lung tissue or writing his thesis dissertation, Alex can often be found sitting in a dark movie theater enjoying a medium cherry coke and a small popcorn (no butter topping). If not there, he might be falling down a mountain on a rented snowboard, lacing up the high tops for some pick-up basketball, or hanging out with his wife. Michelle has been the love of his life from the moment she introduced herself to him in Dr. Norm Moline's Land and Water Resources class right here at Augie. They were married on campue by Pastor Priggie five years later. Michelle is pretty good at putting up with the litany of sports scores and movie quotes Alex throws at her, but is even better at being an 8th grade language arts teacher. They look forward to being reconnected with Augustana.
Chadia Chambers-Samadi, Department of French
Chadia has a B.A. in French Language and Literature and a B.A. in Performing Arts from the Université Stendhal Grenoble III, France. She has an M.A. is European Comparative Literary Studies, from the University of Kent, Canterbury, U.K. and a M.A., M.Phil and Ph.D. in French from the Graduate Center, CUNY. She is a newly-appointed Assistant Professor in French, specializing in 20th and 21st century French theater and poetry. She presented several papers throughout North America and Europe on topics such asPolitical Heroes in Kateb Yacine's tragedies (New York University), The short story by Leila Sebbar (2010 NeMLA convention in Montréal); and other papers on contemporary literatures at the "Women in French" Colloquium Wagner College, U.C.L.A., Louisiana State University, and the Center for History of Mediterranean Islam at the prestigious Ecole des Hautes Etudes des Sciences Socioles in Paris.
She has taught French at Brooklyn College, Baruch College, Hunter College and the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. In her free time, she likes to travel the world with her husband and son. She also enjoys working in her garden, propagating native plants and biking.
Jonathan Crimmins, Department of English
Born in Fall River, Massachusetts, Jonathan Crimmins received a B.A. from St. John's College in Annapolis and an M.F.A. and a Ph.D. from the University of Washington. He has articles published or forthcoming in Studies in Romanticism, Nineteenth-Century Literature, and Diacritics. His stories can be found in Green Mountains Review, City Arts Magazine, The Laurel Review, Harpur Palate, and on The Rumpus. He is at work on a book-length project currently titled Romantic Futurism and the New-Historical Past.
Lynn Drazinski, Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders
Lynn is honored to join the faculty of Augustana in the Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders. She has had a long career as a speech-language pathologist and most recently served on the undergraduate and graduate faculty at Rockhurst University in Kansas City. Lynn takes pride in developing the next generation of clinicians to be thoughtful, competent and caring practitioners. Her undergraduate degree is from Arizona State and she attended the University of Kansas for graduate study.
Neurogenic communication disorders is her area of specialization, with particular expertise in the cognitive and communication deficits associated with acquired brain injury. She particularly enjoys teaching the neural bases of communication disorders. She is a Certified Brain Injury Specialist Trainer and has conducted research in the discourse skills of people with acquired brain injury. She also has scholarly interest in executive function skills, particularly as they relate to discourse.
She recently moved to the Quad Cities from Kansas City. Her husband, Don, is the Chancellow of the Eastern Iowa Community Colleges. They have three young adult children beginning their careers and making their way in the world. For a time last year, they had a daughter in India, a daughter in London, and a son in Haiti. Lynn enjoys gardening, cooking, running, biking, and traveling to keep up with her children.
Lynn looks forward to learning more about the Quad Cities and becoming an active member of her new communities.
Margaret France, Department of English
Margaret France earned a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of California, Davis in 2010. She also studied English at Washington State University (M.A., 2000) and Grinnell College (B.A. 1998). Before coming to Augustana, she was a visiting assistant professor of Humanities at Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey.
Though she teaches everything from composition to classical philosophy, her major research interests lie in eighteenth-century British literature and culture, particular the development of the novel. Her current book project, Now for Something Completely Different: The Non Sequitur Sequel from Robinson Crusoe to Super Mario, begins by examining the way eighteenth-century English writers employed their most celebrated texts as brand-like entities, a practice that declined as authors became more closely associated with texts in the cultural shift toward Romanticism. Her most recent publication, "Robinson Crusoe, Home School Hero," explored Focus on the Family's embrace of an obscure sequel to Robinson Crusoe, and she recently completed an article on eighteenth-century personal ads.
Margaret loves the outdoors, actively as a low-velocity runner, swimmer, and cyclist, and passively as an under-informed fan of baseball and demolition derby. With her girlfriend, Shanti, she looks forward to finding new teams to root for and new speedways to visit in the Midwest.
Eric Gato, Department of Chemistry
Eric's unique educational and research history consists of a Bachelors in Agriculture, followed by a Masters in Environmental Science and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry. He has been able to use his studies in each of these fields to enhance each of the others. He was awarded his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture with Honors from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. His performance in that program led to his acceptance at the University of Nottingham (UK) on a DFIF (Department for International Development) Scholarship, to pursue a Master of Science in Environmental Science, building on his skills in agriculture. He was next accepted into Western Michigan University, where he earned a Ph.D. in Biochemistry.
For the past few years, Eric has taught at least one course a semester including, general chemistry I&II, organic chemistry laboratory, biochemistry and bio-organic chemistry. His primary goal as a teacher has been to deliver effective teaching within a structure that fosters active learning. He has always worked to ensure that students have acquired a broad based knowledge in chemistry, and a rational and systematic approach to solving problems. He believes that this foundation is essential for student success in junior, senior and post-graduate work.
Eric's research interests are in the areas of environmental chemistry and environmental toxicology. Some of these research initiatives include the application of toxicogenomics and proteomics techniques to examine exposure to environmental contaminants. One area that he would like to study is the application of epigenetics to the study of pancreatic cancer. Epigenetic control connotes the idea of alterations in gene expression without changes in the underlying DNA sequence. He would also like to study susceptibility of offspring to metabolic syndrome (insulin resistance) after in utero exposure using animal models.
In addition to teaching and mentoring students in toxicological research, Eric likes to be involved in outreach to the community particularly K through 8th grade schools. He also enjoys being with his wife and three boys. He and his wife, Vivian, together with their boys, like to play soccer, conduct various experiments, read the Bible and enjoy attending Church.
Sean Georgi, Department of Biology
Growing up in Orem, Utah (45 miles south of Salt Lake) Sean's love for biology was nurtured by his parents as they camped and hiked together in the mountains and canyons of Utah. He attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, and after his freshman year of college he spent two years living in Switzerland, France, and Luxembourg as a missionary. He returned to complete his degree in Neuroscience, with minors in French and Molecular Biology. He then went on to do his PhD in Neurobiology and Behavior at the University of Washington where he studied the genetics of retinal development. While there Sean had the opportunity to get involved in neuroscience outreach, something he hopes to continue in the Quad Cities area. In Seattle he met his wife Amy, who is from Tucson, Arizona and has a degree in Supply Chain Management from Arizona State. They moved to Wisconsin in 2011 to begin postdoctoral work at UW-Madison, and are excited to being joining the Augie community.
Sean has previously taught courses in developmental biology, neurobiology, and physiology. His primary research interest is the regulation of cell fate determination in the nervous system. He is interested in understanding how developmental decisions are controlled at a genetic level, particularly by microRNAs, and he has experience using several different model systems, including mouse, chick, and zebrafish embryos. In his spare time, Sean enjoys spending time outdoors, camping and hiking, photography, geocaching, traveling, cooking, and volunteer work with his church group.
Jasmine Harris-LaMothe, Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Welfare
Jamine Harris-LaMothe hails from Minneapolis, MN. She has a B.A. in Sociology, with a minor in Women's Studies, from Vassar College. Jasmine also has an M.S. in Public Relations from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and worked in clean technology public relations for several years in San Francisco, where she met her husband Jonathan. She is currently an ABD Ph.D. candidate in Sociology at the University of Minnesota.
A.J. Juskewycz, Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Welfare
A.J. is a Teaching Fellow in Sociology completing her Ph.D. from Princeton University. Her dissertation looks at how minority religious and social communities are engaged in contemporary public discourse about religious freedom. At Augustana she will teach classes in political sociology, the sociology of religion, contemporary social issues, and introductory sociology. A.J. was previously a Teaching Fellow at Northland College in Ashland, Wisconsin, and completed dissertation work based in Washington, D.C., where she also worked on international LGBTQ human rights in conjunction with religious freedom advocacy at the U.S. Department of State. She has also taught at Northern Virginia Community College and Thurgood Marshall Academy Public Charter High School in Washington, D.C. and co-directed the residence life program for Princeton's summer transition program for first-generation college students. Raised in the culturally distinctive Transcendental Meditation community in Fairfield, Iowa, home of the capital of the imagined Global Country of World Peace, she is excited to have this opportunity to return to the Quad Cities region.
Megan Kelly, Department of Spanish
Megan is from New Haven, Connecticut. She has a B.S. in Foreign Language Education, University of Connecticut (2005), and an M.A. (22007) and Ph.D. (2012) in Hispanic Literature, University of Illinois at Urbaba-Champaign.
Her research focuses on 19th and early 20th century Spanish (peninsular) literature, and she is currently focusing on the intricacies of representing death and dying. In her dissertation, entitled "Fictional Matters: Death, emotion and representation in Nineteenth-Century Spain," she examines the ways in which representations of death are influenced and enhanced by the representation of emotion in a broad spectrum of Realist fiction (1850-1887). Her future research will expand upon the philosophical repercussions of represented emotion as mediator between the material and the ideal.
As a graduate teaching assistant at the University of Illinois, Megan taught a variety of Spanish courses, including multiple levels of language courses, composition, cultural studies, and a community-based-learning language course. During the academic year at Augustana, she will be teaching Composition and Conversation, Elementary Spanish, and Survey of Spanish Literature: 1800 to present.
She enjoys travelling, sporting events, learning about (and sampling!) different cuisines, running, and many genres of music. She grew up near the ocean, but she's learned to appreciate the landscape of the Midwest!
Cassandra Martin, Department of Biology
Cassie earned a BS in Biological Sciences from Eastern Illinois University in 2005. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with University and Departmental Honors. Currently, she is a Ph.D. Candidate in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She will return to Nebraska to defend her dissertation in the coming months. Most of her research has centered on how the environment shapes mating behavior. Male red flour beetles waste sperm, time, energy, and opportunity by incorrectly pairing with other males. For her undergraduate thesis, she studied the effect of environmental factors on male-male pairing behavior in red flour beetles. Male field crickets sing to attract mates; a lethal parasitoid fly is also attracted to male song. There is certainly a conflict between natural and sexual selection for male crickets, but what about for female crickets? Female crickets do not sing, but they can become parasitized by associating with singing males. For her doctoral dissertation, she explored the parasitism risk to females, the costs of parasitism in females, and if these costs affected female mating behavior. In the future, she hopes to keep exploring the "dark" side of sexual selection using a local insect species that she and her students can work with in both the field and lab.
Cassie has been teaching college students for nearly ten years. As an undergraduate student, she taught Animal Diversity and Human Anatomy labs. As a graduate student, she taught Non-Majors General Biology, Organismic Biology, and Ecology and Evolution labs. She also taught Evolution recitation and was a professor's assistant for Ecological Issues in the Great Plains (a non-majors course). Additionally, she attended teaching workshops, participated in numerous informal science education activities, and mentored several undergraduate research students.
For 6.5 years, Cassie has volunteered at Lincoln's only no-kill cat shelter, The Cat House. She used her knowledge of animal behavior a fair amount in talking with potential adopters and in correcting misconceptions about cat behavior and biology. She adopted two cats from The Cat House when she first began volunteering there; they thoroughly enjoy sitting on her papers while she attempts to read or grade. She took up Improvisational Tribal Style belly dance 4.5 years ago as a fun way to get exercise. She soon fell in love with the dance and became a founding member of the group Troupe Sicorae. She occasionally substitute taught dance classes and directed performances. It has been said that being in charge of belly dancers is like herding cats, so she used her classroom command to keep them in line, which was successful...most of the time.
Brigitte McCray, Department of English
Brigitte McCray earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English with a concentration in creative writing from Emory & Henry College. She went on to graduate with a Master of Arts degree in English and a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing with a concentration in fiction, both from Virginia Commonwealth University. In May, 2012, she graduated from Louisiana State University with a doctorate in English and a minor in women's and gender studies. Her dissertation focused on the representation of travel and private space in gay and lesbian Cold War poetry. Her major area of research interest is the literature of war. Her stories, poetry, essays, and reviews have appeared in storySouth.com, Timber Creek Review, Southern Humanities Review, Red Rock Review, The Explicator, The Journal of Homosexuality, and Ecozon@: European Journal of Literature, Culture and Environment. She is at work on a collection of short stories and essays focused on Frank O'Hara and W.H. Auden. She has taught at the Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women in Virginia, Virginia Union University, Virginia Commonwealth University, Northeast State Community College, and LSU. She is excited to join the faculty at Augustana College as a fellow.
Daniel Morris, Department of Religion
Daniel A. Morris recently graduated from the University of Iowa with a PhD in Religious Studies (May, 2012). Prior to his enrollment at Iowa, he earned an MA from Yale Divinity School, and a BA from Davidson College. Dan has served as a teaching assistant for three years, and has given guest lectures in such courses as "War and Peace in Western Religious Thought." His scholarly interests are at the intersection of Christian ethics and American religious history. As Augustana's Bergendoff Teaching Fellow, Dan will instruct students in "American Christianities," and in a course on political theology. Dan and his wife Kate welcomed their first child-a daughter named Parker-to the family this summer. A native of Vermont, he enjoys skiing, riding his road bike, and walking with his dog, Samson.
Jennifer Popple, Department of Theatre
Jennifer received her Ph.D. in Theatre History and Criticism from the University of Colorado in Boulder in 2010. She worked as a graduate instructor at the University of Colorado, and has taught at Knox College in addition to Augustana. In addition to teaching in the Theatre, English, and Women and Gender Studies departments, Dr. Popple also works as a faculty tutor at the Reading and Writing Center. Her forthcoming book, which is an extension of her dissertation, is about the three most famous 17th century English actresses and their impact on the century's political and social movements. Dr. Popple is also interesting in pedagogy and is writing a paper on the best methods for teaching theatre to non-majors. Dr. Popple enjoys reading, movies, spending time with family, and traveling. She recently returned from a month-long trip to Costa Rica and is trying to readjust to life without a beach.
Jordan Purdy, Department of Mathematics & Computer Science
Jordan earned his B.S. in mathematics from George Fox University in Newberg, OR in 2006, and both his M.A. and Ph.D. in mathematics from The University of Montana in 2008 and 2012, respectively. During his six years of graduate school, he worked as a teaching assistant, which included teaching his own courses the last several years. While his degrees are all in mathematics, his specialty is in statistics, and, more specifically, spatial statistics. His research focuses on modeling the spread of binary response variables over space and time, such as the spread (presence or absence) of a disease, while accounting for any number of ecological and/or environmental covariates.
He and his wife have been married for five years and are currently living in Maquoketa, IA, where she works as a pharmacy resident. In his spare time Jordan enjoys reading, playing board games, hiking, and occasionally biking. He's also a sports enthusiast, and as he played baseball while earning his undergraduate degree, he particularly loves to play, watch, and talk about baseball.
Chris Strunk, Department of Geography
Chris Strunk is a graduate of Wesleyan University (BA in Government and Latin American Studies) and University of Minnesota (MA and PhD in Geography). His teaching interests include urban and economic geography, globalization, Latin America, and food. His research focuses on migration, development and citizenship in both Latin America and the United States. Building on his experiences living and volunteering in Cochabamba, his dissertation explores the transnational practices of Bolivian hometown associations in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area. In his spare time, Chris enjoys taking walks with his wife, Julie, and eight month old daughter, Maya, and rooting for the St. Louis Cardinals.
J. Austin Williamson, Department of Psychology
Austin is a graduate student in the Clinical Psychology program at the University of Iowa. He received his B.S in psychology at Vanderbilt University in 2008 and an M.A. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Iowa in 2011. His research centers on the reciprocal relationships between life stress, social interaction, and depression. He is also interested in the development of improved measures of life stress. Austin lives in Iowa City with his wife Kelsey who teaches for the Iowa City Public Schools. His outside interests include running, golf, and good beer.
Hui Zhao, Department of History
Hui received her Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2012, and received a Certificate of Distinction in Teaching from Harvard University in 2008 and 2009. Her area of study is Constitutional history with a particular emphasis on East Asia reception of the concept from the West in the late 19th and early 20th century. She is interested in questions about the purposes of modern constitution with which early East Asian constitutionalists incorporated their indigenous modern state-building. Her research interests include: constitutionalism, legal history, comparative thoughts, East Asian history, Chinese philosophy, and Western political philosophy.