The faculty mentoring program for new faculty is intentional, inclusive, relational, and holistic. It follows a cohort model, with tenured faculty members working with small groups of new faculty. These cohorts meet regularly, observe each other’s classes, and engage in dialogue about key issues at Rhodes and in higher education. Here are the faculty serving as mentors to the new faculty cohort this year:
"I teach a wide range of courses in European history and the history of Western culture, including ones that encourage students to look for the connections between different countries and societies. I believe that no part of the human experience is off-limits for the historian’s study. Therefore, I try to bring an array of stories, documents, and resources to my classroom in order to give students a deep sense of what it was like for people to live at a particular moment in time, including music, literature, film, art, and other kinds of sources. As a result, I try to get my students outside their own heads and into the minds of other people who lived in the past."
Becky Klatzkin (Psychology Department and Neuroscience Program) came to Rhodes in 2011 with a Ph.D. in Behavioral Neuroscience from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research focuses on understanding the psychological and physiological mechanisms underlying stress-eating in women. She teaches a range of classes including Neuroscience, Introduction to Psychology, and Clinical Neuroscience.
Shad Nasong'o is professor and former chair of the Department of International Studies. He has served on the Faculty Governance Committee, Foundational Curriculum Committee, and the Tenure and Promotions Committee. His prolific research and scholarship has earned him the Rhodes College's Clarence Day Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Activity and the Ali Mazrui Award for Research and Scholarly Excellence from the University of Texas at Austin.
Sarah E. Rollens is the R.A. Webb Associate Professor of Religious Studies. She received her doctorate from the University of Toronto, where she studied early Christianity in the Roman Empire. Her current research focuses on the social history of the Jesus movement, exploring such topics as group formation, social networks, literacy and writing practices, and ideological production in early Christian texts. While most of her courses focus on biblical texts in conversation with other culturally important literature (courses include such topics as the Bible and the Afterlife, the Bible and Banned Books, and Introduction Apocalyptic Thought), she also teaches Methods and Theories in Religious Studies.
A student of British literature from the “long” eighteenth century, his classes address authors and areas of inquiry from the Scientific Revolution to the end of the Romantic period. Prof. Rudy is particularly interested in the history of ideas and large-scale knowledge projects. His first book, Literature and Encyclopedism in Enlightenment Britain, tells the story of long-term aspirations, first in ancient epic and then in a wide range of literary and non-literary works from the early modern era and British Enlightenment, to comprehend, record, and disseminate complete knowledge of the world. His current project asks how knowledge producers in the past conceived of the “ends” of learning and what their modern counterparts believe to be the ultimate goals of their own fields of study.
"My post doctoral research work (at St Jude children’s Research hospital) includes structural and thermodynamic Studies of the Winged-helix DNA Binding Domain of the Proto-Oncoprotein Qin using solution Nuclear Magenetic Resonance spectroscopy, and Isothermal calorimetry. The DNA binding winged helix domains of the Qin and human FOXG1B are identical. We study the solution structure of cQin-WHD and describe structural and dynamic changes that occur upon DNA binding."
"In the classroom, my primary goal is to entice students to appreciate the mathematics they are learning. Like most things worth doing, math can be difficult. But students far too commonly focus on the difficulty of mathematics, which certainly doesn′t make it any easier to understand. From introductory to advanced classes, I focus on the motivation and relevance of the material in terms of applications either outside or inside of mathematics. I stress the ways that the material confronts our intuition and challenges us to find out "what is really going on," striving constantly to leave my students eager to understand, not just to finish the current homework assignment."
Dr. Shaolu Yu is an urban geographer. She holds a B.S. in Resources, Environment, Urban Planning and Management (Qufu, China), an M.S. in Urban Geography (Beijing, China), and a Ph.D. in Geography (University of Connecticut, U.S.A). Trained as an urban geographer in an interdisciplinary background and participating in projects in urban studies in China, the U.S., and Canada, she has developed a comparative and global perspective and a mixed method approach in her research on cities. Her papers have been published in the journals Annals of Association of American Geographers, The Professional Geographer, Urban Geography, Geographical Review, and The Journal of Transport Geography.