Fall 2023 First Year Seminar

Choose a course to view details about it and to find out who the professor will be!

Advancing Human Rights and Social Justice - FSEM 100-137 (CRN 7401)

This course introduces human rights and social justice theoretical frameworks and issues from global perspectives, as well as interdisciplinary opportunities to explore art as activism. Specific topics including race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexuality, religion, ability, language and education will be examined. The course encourages reflective practice, critical thinking, collaboration and creativity through community engagement art projects focusing on the intersectionality of social justice issues. Writing as an inquiry-oriented and developmental process will be emphasized, along with oral communication with attention to applied critical thinking.

Your Professor

Rajni Shankar-Brown is an associate professor and the Jessie Ball duPont chair of social justice education. She is also the director of Graduate Education Programs, co-coordinator of the MEd program and a member of the Nina B. Hollis Institute for Educational Reform. She is a passionate teacher-scholar and internationally known expert on poverty and homelessness. As a dedicated educational leader, she has facilitated workshops for thousands of educators and presented around the globe. She has published in leading journals and received numerous awards for her innovative leadership and ongoing community engagement. Prior to her work at Stetson University, Shankar-Brown served as a language arts teacher in high poverty schools in the United States and overseas, a literacy facilitator and the middle-level education graduate program coordinator at UNC Wilmington. Shankar-Brown had the honor of receiving Stetson University's 2014 Hand Community Impact Award and UNC Wilmington's 2013 Inclusive Excellence Award for her teaching, service and scholarship efforts towards social equity, diversity and inclusion. She is actively involved with several professional education organizations at the international, national, state and local levels. She is the founder and executive director of the Poverty and Homelessness Conference (PHC). She is also the current president of the AAUP Stetson Faculty United and the Past-President of the North Carolina Professors of Middle-Level Education organization. Through her research, scholarship and service, Shankar-Brown is committed to transforming education and positively impacting the lives of marginalized students, particularly children experiencing poverty and homelessness in the United States. As a distinguished teacher-scholar and educational leader, her work is focused on transformative education, equity and social justice, culturally relevant pedagogy, diversity and inclusion, arts integration, and multi-literacies. In addition to being a teacher-scholar, Shankar-Brown is a devoted mother, accomplished multi-media artist and a dedicated social activist.

Adventure into the World of Opera - FSEM 100-72 (CRN 5470)

Originating at the dawn of the seventeenth century in late Renaissance Italy, opera is alive and well today- as entertainment, as drama through music, as social and political commentary, as a celebration of historical events, as a psychological examination of humanity- in short, as a mirror of society. This course is designed for the opera novice: any student interested in the art form of opera and wishing to learn about the myriad elements that combine to produce this fascinating and complex combination of music, theater and visual art. Topics for classes include learning about voice types, operatic roles and the production elements involved in the art form, such as staging, conducting, set construction, costuming and theater design, with particular emphasis on opera's connection to and impact on society and culture. Students will meet featured guests from the professional opera world. No musicianship skills such as singing or reading music are required.

No musical training is required to fully participate in course activities. The course is open to non-music majors only.

Your Professor

Thomas Gilmore Masse has enjoyed a distinguished career as a clarinet soloist, chamber artist, and orchestral musician as well as serving in academic leadership positions at Yale and Stetson Universities. He has taught at Stetson, University of Northern Colorado, Yale, and the University of Michigan. His former students are performing in some of the world's most prestigious symphony orchestras and at universities around the world. Mr. Masse is a strong advocate for the arts in education and society.

Change Agents: Lawyers Who Make a Difference - FSEM 100-184 (CRN 8126)

Throughout history, lawyers have had a great impact on the direction of American business, government, and society. This course examines how lawyers from the past and in the present have built businesses, shaped government, and righted wrongs. In this course, we will focus on well-known and not-so-well-known lawyers, as well as the business, governmental, and societal environments that provided the impetus for them to make a difference.

Your Professor

Elizabeth (Libba) Galloway is Assistant Professor of Practice in Business Law and Director of Stetson's Business Law Program. She earned a B.A. from the College of William and Mary and a JD from Duke University School of Law. Prior to coming to Stetson, she was a Partner in the Cincinnati office of the national law firm Taft, Stettinius & Hollister; served as Deputy Commissioner and Chief Legal Officer of the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA); and was Executive Director of the Professional Association of Athlete Development Specialists (PAADS). Her years of experience working in law and in business opened her eyes to the myriad of ways in which lawyers can not only have fulfilling careers for themselves but can also have a positive impact on the world in which they live.

Charisma: Cults and Causes - FSEM 100-187 (CRN 8281)

This First Year Seminar will explore charismatic leadership in the 20th and early 21st century and the impact these leaders have on their organizations and the causes they espouse. The course will explore the attributes of charismatic leaders who have emerged over the last 100 years, along with the role that their followers play in supporting the leader’s power and mission. The course will also examine the nature of Personalized and Socialized charismatic leaders and explore examples, and implications, of modern cults and causes.

Your Professor

Chris Colwell is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Education at Stetson University. Prior to his work at Stetson, Dr. Colwell served as a teacher, counselor, elementary, middle and high school principal, and as Deputy Superintendent for the Volusia County School Board.

Chris Colwell served as President of the Florida Organization for Instructional Leaders. He was named Florida’s Principal of the Year in 1997. Dr. Colwell is a frequent presenter at the state and national level on issues relating to education leadership, innovation, and reform.

Chris Colwell’s scholarly work centers on best practices in educational leadership. He has published three books on the subject; Impact: How Assistant Principals Can Be High Performing Leaders (2015), Mission Driven Leadership: Understanding the Challenges Facing Schools Today (2018), and the Fourth Tier: Leadership and the Power of Charisma (2020)

Comics and Graphic Novels - FSEM 100-59 (CRN 5451)

Stories told in words and pictures go by many different names all around the world, such as comic strips, comic books, graphic novels, manga, bandes dessinées, fumetti, tebeos, comix, imagetexts, sequential art and graphic narratives. Whatever they are called, comics and their influence are everywhere-on magazine racks, online, in literary journals, in museum galleries and on movie screens. They have been used to tell the simplest of jokes, create the wildest fantasy worlds and explore the depths of the most profound human experiences. This course will examine the art form that the French call "The 9th Art" in order to: Examine how words and pictures combine to make meanings; Survey a variety of texts from different times and places; Investigate where comics have come from, where they are now, and where they might go in the future. We will work together on reading visual/verbal texts closely, on writing analytically, and on finding ideas and presenting them in class. Students will have the opportunity to design a creative project in which they make their own comic or create a work of art about comics.

Your Professor

Joseph "Rusty" Witek, professor of humanities, has been teaching English and Humanities courses at Stetson University since 1989. He is known as one of the first academics in the United States to focus on comics as an art form, making Stetson one of the first universities to offer regularly scheduled courses on comics and graphic novels. He has published books and articles on such topics as comics criticism and theory, autobiography and history in comics, war comics, 9/11 in comics and the fact that Donald Duck can't fly. He is presently working on a book project that examines some of the worst comics ever published.

Data, Technology and Society - FSEM 100-1183 (CRN 8125)

Data has become an integral part of everyone's daily life. Every time you post on social media, select a movie to watch online or make an online purchase, you leave a digital footprint. These are only a few of the ways that data is generated. That ever growing ocean of data can be used to help doctors make better medical diagnoses, help you find a movie that you might like, help a marketer target the sales of a product or possibly even affect how a person will vote. In this class, we will explore different aspects of how data and technology affect your day-to-day life. We will critically think about the ethical implications of the use of data, the consequences of how you share information and how others may misuse data. We will reflect on the implications of these uses (and abuses) of data through discussions, presentations and written activities.


Your Professor

Jay Stryker is a Visiting Assistant Professor in Stetson's Business Systems and Analytics department. He has been a consultant to Volusia County Schools and has many years' experience teaching and tutoring various aspects of technology and data analysis. He is a Stetson graduate who received his Bachelor's degree in Computer Science, Physics and Mathematics. He went on to receive a Masters's degree in Applied Mathematics from Georgia Tech and a PhD in Mathematics from Florida State University. His research interests include machine learning, big data and multi-criterion decision making.


Diversity in the 21st Century Classroom - FSEM 100-37 (CRN 4993)

In this course, we will examine the meaning of diversity and its relation to global education. Through literature and film, we will discuss the broad definition of diversity, focusing on the study of race, ethnicity, language, gender, social class, sexual orientation, religion, and emotional and physical disabilities. All students will use field placements in local schools or non-profit organizations to provide practical experiences that will illuminate our class's major concepts.

Your Professor

Bette Heins holds the Nina B. Hollis Chair of Educational Reform in the Department of Teacher Education. She directs the Hollis Institute for Educational Reform and teaches educational psychology, exceptional student education and classroom management. Her research interests include single-gender education, reading issues and classroom management. She loves teaching about diversity in the classroom and, in her words, "celebrates deviancy on a daily basis." 

East Asian Food and Society - FSEM 100-197 (CRN 8344)

This freshman seminar investigates food in East Asian societies, as well as overseas Asian communities, from a sociological perspective. In the first part of the course, students will examine the social construction of food and relationship between food and identity, particularly among Asian (American) groups. The course then turns to how economic development changes food systems, consumption, and population health in East Asian societies. Finally, the course traces the environmental impacts of food from farm to table to landfill. The course will feature numerous opportunities to sample Asian cuisine and snacks without leaving DeLand.

Your Professor

Rachel Core is a medical and comparative historical sociologist whose research examines how social conditions and factors, including access to healthcare and preventive programming, affect health outcomes. Dr. Core has spent ten years overseas, including eight years in East Asia. She is obsessed with food and looks forward to sharing this obsession with her FSEM students. She is currently Associate Professor, Chair of the Sociology and Anthropology Department, and Chair of the International Learning Committee at Stetson University.

Energy and the Environment - FSEM 100-01 (CRN 4618)

One of the most important challenges facing the world in the twenty-first century is to identify and develop sustainable sources of energy in order to maintain a reasonable standard of living while also minimizing our impact on the environment. This seminar will discuss the science of energy production and usage for a variety of energy sources and energy conservation strategies, and also examine the environmental advantages and drawbacks of each source or strategy. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill into the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 and the nuclear disaster in Japan after the earthquake and tsunami of 2011 illustrate just some of the dangers underlying our current energy production portfolio. The science regarding the challenge of global climate change will also be discussed. While the seminar is discussion-based and writing-intensive, students will be introduced to the basic physical principles and skills necessary to understand the issues involved in energy systems and sustainability, including physical units conversion and problem-solving techniques. The course will also include course blog postings and discussion of topics of current interest regarding energy and environmental issues found in the popular press.

Your Professor

Kevin Riggs holds a PhD in Physics from the University of Minnesota and specializes in research on magnetic materials useful for magnetic recording and information storage. He also holds an MS in Physics/Musical-acoustics from Case Western Reserve University and has an active research program using laser-based holographic techniques to image the vibration patterns of musical instruments. He teaches many advanced courses for physics majors, but especially enjoys interacting with students from a wide range of backgrounds in his general education course on musical acoustics titled "The Science of Music" and his new first-year seminar titled "Energy and the Environment." In his spare time, Riggs enjoys playing guitar in a Stetson University faculty jazz quartet, the "Thin Film Magnetism."

Exploration and Outdoor Survival - FSEM 100-178 (CRN 8024)

Why do we feel the need to explore? Why do we risk life and limb in pursuit of discovery? When George Mallory was asked why he wanted to climb Everest, he responded, "because its there." Shackleton recruited volunteers for his Antarctic expedition with the promise of “...hazardous journey, small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness, constant danger, safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition in case of success”.

This seminar will examine a collection of human attempts at exploration and discovery. The course will cover an eclectic mix of expeditions including the first circumnavigation of the globe, Lewis and Clark's trek to the Pacific Ocean, the race to The South Pole, the quest for Mount Everest, and the US 1969 Moon Landing. The course will also include harrowing accounts of survival as well as discussions of modern outdoor survival techniques. We will discuss the motivations for exploration, the benefits of discovery, and ponder how exploration changes us. The class will culminate in a day hike at a local state park and an optional overnight camping trip.

Your Professor

Matthew Imes is an assistant professor of finance at Stetson University. His teaching experience includes financial management and securities analysis and portfolio management. He has presented research papers at the Southern Finance Association, Eastern Finance Association, American Real Estate Society, and the Financial Engineering and Banking Society conferences. In addition to his work as a finance professor, he enjoys spending time with his family, traveling, running, and hiking.

Freedom's Turn: The Axis Age of 500 B.C. and its Legacy - FSEM 100-175 (CRN 7911)

After the Second World War, one European famously compared the defeat of fascism to a moment in time around 500BC. In the 1940s, many of your great grandfathers and great grandmothers helped establish the liberty that we and many others still enjoy. The same thing happened 2500 years ago – only for the very first time, and it was by no means easy: the golden rule had to be invented from scratch. During this “Axis Age,” the likes of Confucius (in China), Socrates (in Greece), and the Buddha (in India) took on social stratification, rapid technological change, and civil war which they believed were the results of a “pre-moral world” dominated by the supernatural. (Can you imagine a world where individual humans had no say over what was happening to them?) But this courageous pivot towards a more reasonable path to liberty and stability soon met its authoritarian match: the rise of emperors and empires and popular monotheisms perfected by St. Augustine (Christianity) and Muhammad (Islam) by the 600s AD. After reading, speaking with each other, and writing about the biographies of such people, our journey will conclude by highlighting Martin Luther's sixteenth century challenge to the Pope and his unintentional kindling of today's democracy. We'll end by asking this deceptively simple question: “Can we continue this ‘pause for liberty' which many of your ancestors helped ensure, or are we destined for some other fate?”

Your Professor

Dr. Martin Blackwell is a specialist on Eurasian history, having lived in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Volgograd, Kyiv, L’viv (Ukraine) and Almaty (Kazakhstan) and speaking fluent Russian. Before earning his Ph.D. in History, he worked in various capacities across the post-Soviet space including two memorable years as a Russian-speaking laborer at the Embassy of the United States in Moscow. His recent book Kyiv as Regime City: The Return of Soviet Power after the Nazi Occupation uncovers the anti-Semitic and conservatively statist reasons behind Joseph Stalin’s popularity following the Second World War. Blackwell has published in leading journals such as Slavic Review, the English Historical Review and Harvard Ukrainian Studies, received invitations to present his research in Europe and the former Soviet Union and regularly reviews other scholars’ texts for university presses. While currently researching Soviet Communism’s unprecedented collapse, Blackwell is also interested in the cyclical nature of history and has taught survey courses on the ancient and medieval worlds. In his free time, Dr. Blackwell especially enjoys hanging out with his wife and eight-year-old daughter and exploring the world as a family.;

Ghost Stories: East and West - FSEM 100-102 (CRN 6591)

A few buildings at Stetson University are said to be haunted, most notably Elizabeth Hall and the remnants of Hulley Tower. Central Florida abounds in ghost stories overall and such tales can be found all over the world. Students may be familiar with the misty apparitions that glide through walls or walk noisily upstairs in the middle of the night, but what about the life-sucking powers of Chinese fox spirits, the gory appetites of Tibetan flesh-eating demons, or the unrelenting stalking of Japanese vengeance ghosts? This course will introduce students to both classic examples of Western ghost stories and gothic tales as well as folklore and fictional accounts from India, Tibet, China and Japan. Western examples will include the writings of Edgar Allan Poe, M.R. James, and H.P. Lovecraft, while eastern stories will include Indian tales by Rudyard Kipling, Pu Songling's "Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio," and the Japanese "Tales of Moonlight and Rain" by Akinari Ueda. Students will read these stories and compare and contrast how ghosts and otherworldly spirits are portrayed between cultures. Assignments will also focus on how these stories reflect the societies in which they were written and include viewings of popular Chinese and Japanese horror films.

Your Professor

Christopher Bell received his B.A and M.A from Florida State University and his PhD from the University of Virginia. His specialization is in Tibetan Buddhism, with a secondary concentration in Asian religions overall. He is particularly interested in Indian, Tibetan and Chinese demonologies. He has presented papers and published articles on Tibetan deity cults, oracles, and divination. Prior to joining Stetson in the fall of 2013, he taught at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, conducted fieldwork in Tibet and India, and lived in the south of Turkey. He is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society. 

Global Citizenship: Individual, Community, World - FSEM 100-111 (CRN 6654)

Today, more than ever before, globalization is part of our everyday local lives. We are linked to others on every continent:

  • socially through the media and telecommunications
  • culturally through movements of people
  • economically through trade
  • environmentally through sharing one planet
  • Politically through international relations and systems of regulation.

In a fast-changing and interdependent world, education can, and should, help people to meet the challenges they will confront now and in the future. Global Citizenship is essential in helping people rise to those challenges. In this course, we will define global citizenship. We will discuss what steps need to be taken in order to prepare to become a global citizen. We will reflect on what it means to be an individual, what it means to be a citizen in your local community, and what it means to be a citizen of the world.

Your Professor

Savannah-Jane Griffin has over six years of higher education experience focusing on community-engaged learning, campus-community partnership development, strength-based leadership and non-profit leadership. Savannah-Jane has facilitated community-engaged learning and community capacity building training for faculty, students, and community partners nationally through Campus Compact, the Bonner Foundation, and the IMPACT National Conference. She is the founding Director of Stetson University's national award-winning Center for Community Engagement and has led Stetson University's efforts in institutionalizing community engagement across the curriculum. She has a Master's in Business Administration with a focus in Management from Stetson University and is currently serving as a Bonner National Fellow. She is a current executive board member of the IMPACT National Conference and the Mainstreet DeLand Association. Savannah-Jane has a passion for empowering individuals to use their strengths to create positive change in our local and global communities.

How to be an Ancient Historian - FSEM 100-81 (CRN 6122)

For every student fascinated by ancient Egypt, the Greeks and Romans, the ancient Near East and the Fall of the Roman Empire, there is a nagging question of how we know so much about such long departed societies, especially when so few ancient documents were preserved. This course will introduce the student to the various ways in which ancient historians study these societies. You will learn how to use archaeology, how to read coins and inscriptions, and how to study the ancient natural environment. You will also have the chance to learn about current trends and controversies in ancient history, and how historians use the written and non-written evidence to study the distant past. The class will be challenging and interactive, as we look at what we can learn from actual coin "hoards", excavations, inscriptions, and the voices of the ancients themselves. No knowledge of ancient language is needed.

Your Professor

Dr. Kimberly D. S. Reiter is Associate Professor of Ancient and Medieval History at Stetson University. Her scholarship focuses on the Western Roman Empire, specifically the Aquitaine Basin, and in the impact of Romanization in perceptions of the wilderness. Within her own field, she is interested in the differing perceptions of "Romanization" as a measurement of Roman involvement and agency, and has recently co-authored a textbook in Western Civilization. Dr. Reiter has had extensive experience designing and teaching courses in environmental history and environmental issues and has presented and published papers on the teaching of environmental issues from an interdisciplinary perspective. She is currently President of the Interdisciplinary Environmental Association (IEA). She is very active in student field projects as well, and directs the Stetson British Field Course on the Early English landscape. She is also advisor for the Stetson chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the History honors society, and chairs the Stetson Undergraduate Research committee.

Identity Theft - FSEM 100-164 (CRN 7776)

This course is an introduction to identity theft and its impact on individuals and businesses. We will focus on the risk, reduction, and recovery from identity theft. Students will learn to recognize the risks of identity theft and ways to reduce victimization from identity theft. In addition, students will develop a plan to recover from identity theft. We will study Identity theft cases as well as business and government actions resulting from identity theft.

This course does not offer or replace legal, financial, or other professional advice. One should consult attorneys, certified public accountants, or other competent professionals should such advice become necessary.

Your Professor

Betty Thorne, PhD, author, researcher and award-winning teacher, is a professor of statistics in the School of Business Administration at Stetson University. She is a winner of Stetson University's McEniry Award for Excellence in Teaching, the highest honor given to a Stetson faculty member, and is also a recipient of the university's Advisor of the Year Award and the School of Business Administration's Outstanding Teacher and Professor of the Year Awards. Thorne has taught in Stetson University's undergraduate and graduate programs (M.BA, executive M.BA and J.D./M.BA) and the summer program in Austria. She is a co-author of numerous statistics textbooks that have been translated into several languages and adopted by universities both nationally and internationally. She serves on key school and university committees. Thorne, whose research has been published in various refereed journals, the Decision Science Institute and other professional organizations. Thorne has served the School of Business Administration as the associate dean, the director of undergraduate studies, the director of undergraduate business student success, and the chair of the Department of Decision and Information Science (now the Department of Business Systems and Analytics).

Inked: Tattoos in Society - FSEM 100-129 (CRN 7132)

From the geometric line-work found on the 5,000-year-old mummy of Ötzi the Iceman to the full-color, photo-realistic portrait of their dog that someone, somewhere is getting tattooed right now, tattoos have been a part of societies across the globe for millennia. In this seminar, we will explore the art of tattooing, examining different styles and methods, as well as delve into tattoos as self-expression and their place in various cultures and subcultures. Through frequent writing assignments, lively classroom discussions, oral presentations, and debates we will examine the questions of why do people get tattoos, what do they mean, how are they received by others, and much more.

Your Professor

Colin MacFarlane comes from a social science background with a focus on quantitative analysis and postmodern historiography. He is heavily tattooed, receiving his first piece at the age of 18 and continuing to build his collection every year since. His ink is diverse in content but has predominant stylistic influences from Japanese Traditional and Art Nouveau. He is a strong proponent of identity exploration and expression and has facilitated dialogues and presented workshops around identity development and intercultural competence with college students, business leaders, and higher education professionals. Joining Hatter Nation in the fall of 2012, he serves as the Director of Assessment and Operational Effectiveness where he leads the division of Campus Life and Student Success in answering the questions of what we are doing, why we are doing it, and how could we be doing it better. He received his Master of Education in Measurement, Evaluation, Statistics and Assessment from the University of Illinois at Chicago and has been working in higher education since 2009.

Left-Wing Authoritarianism: Stalin, Mao, and Castro - FSEM 100-188 (CRN 8283)

Communism swept the globe after 1917. What is it that has made socialism or communism widely appealing to so many people over the past century? Why, on the other hand, has it been so challenging to translate a doctrine that was so compelling on paper to reality? And if communism is, intrinsically, an anti-authoritarian ideology, why did it produce so many autocratic regimes? In this course, we are going to examine different facets of Socialist ideology and Communist state and society, using three case studies: USSR, PRC (China) and Cuba focusing on the rule of Stalin, Mao and Castro.

Your Professor

Monika A. Kurlander received her BA from University of Wroclaw, Poland and University of Massachusetts, and her MA from Stetson University. Prior to joining Stetson, she was a resident scholar at Harvard University, a faculty at PH College in Freiburg, Germany, and has been teaching International Baccalaureate for years.

Moby Dick and Philosophy - FSEM 100-73 (CRN 5380)

Moby Dick is the story of two kinds of philosophical heroes. One kind of hero seeks to pierce the wall of the mundane in order to catch a glimpse of the Real. “To me,” Captain Ahab says, “the white whale is that wall.” Ishmael represents a different kind of philosophical hero. And while Ahab is ultimately brought down by the whale, Ishmael not only survives the confrontation but is arguably transformed by it for the better. As humans, we find ourselves adrift at sea. How best, then, to confront its mysteries?

Your Professor

Joshua Rust, Associate Professor and Chair of the Philosophy Department, specializes in the subfield of Social Ontology. Having taught courses on philosophical choice within video games and the philosophy and Harry Potter, he's especially interested in how the discipline of philosophy can illuminate questions raised within popular culture.

Persuasion: Winning Arguments by Design - FSEM 100-200 (CRN 8367)

"Persuasion is often more effectual than force"...Aesop. From social media, to marketing, or the courtroom, we are persuaded (and we persuade) on a daily basis. But, how do we know which tactic to use in a given situation? When should technology be included? In this course, students will examine, analyze, and practice a variety of strategies designed to improve their argument designs and communication skills. Be prepared to have thoughtful conversations and substantive analysis, critical thought, & reflection. This is a writing intensive course.

Your Professor

Michele Randall holds degrees in Technical Writing (BA), Creative Writing (MA), and Poetry (MFA), and has taught College Writing, Composition, Creative Writing, Interdisciplinary Studies and Post-Apocalyptic Fiction. Her book, Museum of Everyday Life (Kelsay Books) was published in 2015, and her work has appeared or is forthcoming from Painted Bride Quarterly, The Potomac Review, Newport Review (First Prize Flash Fiction) and elsewhere. Her current work focuses on the new realities of mental health patients and was a finalist for the Peter Meinke Poetry Prize. She appreciates a good sense of humor and has been known to geek out over Dr. Who, Torchwood, Star Trek, and Star Wars.

Religion and Human Rights in a Pluralistic World - FSEM 100-168 (CRN 7842)

What is the relationship between God and morality? What role did religion play in the formation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? How have religious traditions such as Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism conceived of human rights, and how have their adherents approached such human rights issues as the freedom of religion, violence and the right to peace, women’s rights, and refugee rights? In the course of exploring these and other issues related to religion and human rights, students in this First-Year Seminar will develop skills related to academic and policy research and writing, information literacy, the analysis of scholarly arguments, public speaking, and group collaboration.

Your Professor

Sam Houston specializes in modern Islamic thought, comparative religious ethics, and Christian-Muslim relations. He spent two years teaching English in Abu Dhabi, UAE, during which time he traveled extensively throughout the Middle East. In 2013, he was awarded a U.S. State Department-sponsored Critical Language Scholarship to study Arabic in Morocco. He earned his PhD from Florida State University, an MA in philosophy from Boston College, a Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a BA from Baylor University. He enjoys traveling with his wife Shannon, long-distance running, and watching Arrested Development ad infinitum.

Russia: Right Now - FSEM 100-198 (CRN 8365)

Why does so much mystery and intrigue surround present-day Russia? This adventure focuses on the critical moments creating ordinary Russians’ perceptions of the world. Surprisingly, many of these moments are not all that different from those shaping our own reality. Polarization, inequality, racism, popular culture, climate change, technological innovation, even the private sphere—everything will be on the table. But the particular intellectual trajectories working to form Russians’ understandings will be the points for analysis. Can we capture, for example, some of those dynamic historical processes which have long been being formulated behind what amounts to an almost new “iron curtain”? The forces then creating the everyday lives and dreams of Russians will be what we talk and write about with the goal of understanding also where our own futures are headed.

Your Professor

Dr. Martin Blackwell is a specialist on Eurasian history, having lived in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Volgograd, Kyiv, L’viv (Ukraine) and Almaty (Kazakhstan) and speaking fluent Russian. Before earning his Ph.D. in History, he worked in various capacities across the post-Soviet space including two memorable years as a Russian-speaking laborer at the Embassy of the United States in Moscow. His recent book Kyiv as Regime City: The Return of Soviet Power after the Nazi Occupation uncovers the anti-Semitic and conservatively statist reasons behind Joseph Stalin’s popularity following the Second World War. Blackwell has published in leading journals such as Slavic Review, the English Historical Review and Harvard Ukrainian Studies, received invitations to present his research in Europe and the former Soviet Union and regularly reviews other scholars’ texts for university presses. While currently researching Soviet Communism’s unprecedented collapse, Blackwell is also interested in the cyclical nature of history and has taught survey courses on the ancient and medieval worlds. In his free time, Dr. Blackwell especially enjoys hanging out with his wife and eight-year-old daughter and exploring the world as a family.

SALSA: Multicultural Music of the Caribbean - FSEM 100-107 (CRN 6630)

Have you ever been to a Latino party? Have you ever listened to salsa? Have you ever danced salsa? What do you know about salsa? This course explores the origin and history of one of the most versatile and popular musical genres of the 20th and 21st centuries. Salsa has transcended the borders of the Caribbean and the entire American continent to European and Asian latitudes because of its complex and irresistible rhythms, its attractive melodies, and its sensual and romantic lyrics. What is the musical power of salsa? What is inside of this contagious rhythm that communes magically with the content of a text? How can performers improvise words and new phrases without departing from the main message? We will examine the different styles of salsa in its various forms and its vocabulary and slangs to identify musical momentums, as well as to recognize their rhythmic structures and sounds. Will you dare to play it, dance it and sing it?

Your Professor

Jesus Alfonzo is associate professor of music in viola, chamber music and music history at Stetson University, where he also conducts the Viola Consort and leads the Viola Clinic. He is also a member of the Bach Festival Orchestra in Winter Park, Fla. and has been a member of the Rios Reyna String Quartet since 1987. He received a diploma and post-graduate Diploma from the Juilliard School of Music and master of music and doctorate in musical arts degrees from the Michigan State University.

Alfonzo was born in Caracas, Venezuela. He is a founding member of the EL SISTEMA, The Venezuelan National System of Youth Orchestras, in which he had the opportunity to develop both his teaching and playing skills. In 1980 and 1981, he was principal violist of the Jeunesses Musicales World Orchestra. Later, he became principal violist of Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra, a position he held for sixteen years. In his vast orchestral experience he has worked with distinguished conductors and soloists including Claudio Abbado, Gustavo Dudamel, Leonard Bernstein, Jose Antonio Abreu, Maxim Schostakovitch, Kristoff Penderecki, Zubin Mehta, Serge Baudo, Carlos Chavez, Jerzy Semkov, Eduardo Mata, Claudio Arrau, Joseph Silverstein, Mstislav Rostropovich, PinchasZukerman, Yo-Yo Ma, Monserrat Caballe, Jean PierreRampal, Yehudi Menuhin and Henry Szeryng. He has taught in Venezuela at the Conservatorio de Musica Simon Bolivar, the Institute of Musical Studies and the ColegioEmil Friedman.

Since 1998, he has given an annual series of viola and string pedagogy master classes at EL SISTEMA in almost every state of Venezuela. In 2008, he wrote the First Catalogue for Latin American Viola Music.

Self and Style - FSEM 100-88 (CRN 6227)

Everyone begins the day by putting on clothes, but not everyone thinks about their choices. We thus begin the course with three central questions: Looking at history and culture, how have value and meaning - personal, cultural, economic -- been inscribed in clothes and adornment? How does what we wear reflect our choices and our places in the world? What are the true costs of style?

In the class we’ll read a text on fashion history at the beginning of class (and develop our eyes in terms of proportions, cuts, and fabric); we'll do an assignment where we analyze current writing about fashion against our own observations of Stetson style; we’ll read history and literary works about fashion movements and rebellion (the LA Zoot Suit Riot in the 1940s; youth culture in the 1960s); last, we’ll read the new book Fashionopolis by Dana Thomas, who addresses the environmental and personal cost of current fashion but also entrepreneurial and scientific breakthroughs in better practices. Each student will write a style credo for their final project.

Your Professor

Lori Snook, PhD, is a specialist in dramatic literature; her academic training is in Restoration comedy, a historical genre famously concerned with style, and she is currently working on a scholarly project on Noel Coward. She is also the chair of the English Department. 

Self and World - FSEM 100-10 (CRN 4627)

What does the term "individual" mean apart from "the community"? What does "community" mean apart from the concept of "the individual"? This seminar will explore the relationship between these two concepts with a view to understanding how the community shapes the individual and how the individual can, and should, shape the community. We will think about issues pertaining to social justice and ask what responsibility the individual has for her or his own formation and what responsibility the individual has for the formation and well-being of the community. Service-learning in the community is central to this exploration.

Your Professor

Jeremy Posadas holds Stetson University's Hal S. Marchman Chair of Civic and Social Responsibility along with a joint appointment as associate professor of religious studies and gender studies. He joined Stetson after 11 years teaching in rural North Texas. As a professor, his chief goal is to foster learning experiences for diverse students to build an equitable and caring community as they co-create new understandings that are useful for disrupting and dismantling systemic injustice.

As a social ethicist, he critiques unjust aspects of society and proposes alternatives to promote social justice, on the basis of intersectionally feminist, queer, anti-racist, anti-capitalist and eco-centric moral principles. He majored in the Great Books in college yet later wrote his dissertation shaped by the post-structuralist thought of Michel Foucault. His recently published essays have addressed topics including reproductive justice; feminist anti-work theory; pedagogies to dismantle rape culture and its root cause, toxic masculinity; and solidarity with the working class. At his previous institution, he led the effort that secured a $1.3 million grant from the Mellon Foundation for social justice curriculum development. In addition, Posadas has held faculty fellowships at Vanderbilt University Divinity School, Auburn Seminary (in NYC) and the Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion. He serves on the elected committee that oversees the world's largest gathering of religion scholars and also co-chairs its unit on the study of class and labor.

In 2018, Posadas created the United Regions of America map, clustering all 3,142 counties (and equivalents) into 14 regions that calibrate local perceptions with major landforms and industries. This map offers a more useful alternative to the cultural stereotypes and colonialist assumptions projected in Colin Woodard's map of eleven American nations.

Before becoming a professor, Posadas worked as an organizer in the labor and LGBTQ movements; ministry leader in a multi-racial urban congregation; social work assistant in a pediatric hospital; and award-winning fast food order-taker/cashier. His hobbies include ice and inline skating, listening to Beethoven, watching sci-fi and rom-coms/-drams (bonus if they're gay!) and delving into Census data and regional geography.

Show Me the Money - FSEM 100-192 (CRN 8296)

The idea of giving back is not a new one; however, it may be suggested that the younger generation demands a stronger connection to the community. Individuals and organizations often connect to society through cause-related marketing, fundraising and community events. This course examines the fundaments of fundraising, including not-for-profit organization capital creation and recruiting, and for-profit organization cause-related marketing. We will focus on the idea generation, strategic goal creation and tactical implementation of fundraising activities. Students will learn how to develop effective fundraising activities that meet specific strategic goals, while making a difference and connecting with the community around them.

Your Professor

Dena H. Hale earned a triple major (BS degree in business administration, BS degree in marketing, and BA degree in foreign language and international trade) from the Southern Illinois University Carbondale, an M.BA degree from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and her Doctor of Philosophy Business Administration (PhD) in marketing from Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Dr. Hale has over 20 years of professional experience in marketing and sales within the services sector. Over the course of her professional career, Dr. Hale has held numerous roles. She has 11 years as a soldier, eight years as sales representative for transportation/logistics firms and radio advertising, 8 years as an Entrepreneur, and over 20 years of fundraising success.

Technology and Crisis - FSEM 100-163 (CRN 7770)

This first-year seminar prepares students to critically examine our culture's extreme obsession with technology and media in an era of perpetual crisis. Using literature, film, graphic novels, and video games, students will analyze the cultural crisis of technology and explore societal issues surrounding privacy and information security, the coming AI revolution, and how science and technology are redefining what it even means to be “human.” How should we live in a world so conditioned—and threatened—by technological progress? To what extent does technology aid humans' search for meaning—and to what extent does it limit us? How are we to protect ourselves in a post-truth world? In this discussion-based and writing-enhanced course, we will address each of these topics as well as the question of how technology and digital culture are shaping our personal identities and lives. Texts may include (but are not limited to) Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, Spike Jonze's Her, Lauren Beukes' Moxyland, Philip K. Dick's A Scanner Darkly, Issac Asimov's "The Last Question," Jeff VanderMeer's Annihilation, the B-Game "Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy," Toby Fox's Undertale, and selections from the television series, Black Mirror and Westworld.

Your Professor

Christopher D. Jimenez is an Assistant Professor of English at Stetson. His research examines the discourse of catastrophe in 20th- and 21st-century global Anglophone literature, with interdisciplinary interests in ecocriticism, nuclear criticism, biopolitics and the sociology of literature. His secondary work in the digital humanities focuses on the theoretical and computational features of alphabets and their relationship to artificial intelligence and the philosophy of language.

The Anxiety of Identity - FSEM 100-48 (CRN 5242)

I think therefore I am... I think? Art often teases us with competing concepts of the self that shake the stability of identity, taunting us with an existential anxiety. This course’s focus on identity will develop critical and analytical thinking while serving as an introduction to existentialism and its relationship to literature and film. We will use novels, short stories, plays, films, and other narrative forms to explore the moral, social, political, and artistic questions at the foundation of existentialism in its specific historical context; we will then try to think through how those questions and answers change in later, more modern contexts, indeed, how they matter for us today in our day-to-day lives.

Your Professor

Nicole Denner, PhD, attended Indiana University for her undergraduate and master's degree and received her PhD in Comparative Literature from Northwestern University. She studied horror films at IU and eighteenth-century Enlightenment literature for her doctorate (they aren't so different after all). She has taught at Stetson since 2001 in both the French and English departments. She is most interested in how and why texts so frequently turn inward and comment upon themselves. 

The Early American Navy - FSEM 100-189 (CRN 8284)

The young United States Navy was a failure for the first decades of existence, and only gained strength after the War of 1812. This course will introduce you to the study of naval history through the lens of the fighting ships of sail, their officers and the politics, economics and society that defined the evolution of the navy. Race, class, and gender will also be studied as we look at the crews that manned these ships, and the unique naval culture that formed shipboard.

Your Professor

Kimberly D. Reiter is Associate Professor of Ancient and Medieval History at Stetson University. Besides her favorite courses in Roman and English history, Dr. Reiter also teaches maritime and environmental history.As a teenager she sailed around the world in a homemade boat, comes from a naval family, and has expertise in naval and pirate history in the age of sail (She teaches a killer course on the History of Piracy). On dry land she is an expert on Stonehenge – ask her anything. She is past President of the Interdisciplinary Environmental Association (IEA) and a National Councilor in the Council for Undergraduate Research.She has also been a Coleman Scholar for Entrepreneurship and recipient of the NEH Enduring Questions Grant. She directs the Stetson Field Course on the Early English landscape and the Stetson Rome Experience.

The Past is Present - FSEM 100-149 (CRN 7667)

Why do war memorials and historical films spark controversy years after the events they depict? It's because they are part of historical memory—how people shape a collective identity based on ideas about the past. This kind of memory exists in many places—monuments in public parks, films, museums, public art, tourism, and public celebrations like parades and festivals. People learn about history from these kinds of places as much (or more) as they learn from history classes and books. To understand the power of historical memory, we have to think about what these collective memories tell us about the American past. Whose stories are told and whose are not? Whose faces and what events do we learn about in public space? What kinds of films tell America's stories? This course examines how Americans have shaped historical memory at various points in time from the early nineteenth century to the present. We will get out into our local community and use DeLand itself to examine the workings of historical memory in our own times. Ultimately, we will consider how Americans, collectively and in conflict, produce ideas about the past.

Your Professor

Dr. Emily Mieras teaches a range of courses in the History Department as well as in the American Studies Program and the Gender Studies Program. She is currently working on a research project about historical memory and community identity in the American South, work that helped inspire this course. Originally from Lexington, Massachusetts, Dr. Mieras grew up attending battle re-enactments on the anniversary of the battles of Lexington and Concord—an experience that also shaped her interest in the ways history influences tourism, landscape, and sense of place. Dr. Mieras attended Harvard University (A. B in History and Government) and the College of William and Mary (M. A. and PhD, American Studies). Outside the classroom and the archive, Dr. Mieras enjoys exploring new places and seeing firsthand how “the past is present.”

The Revolution Might be Televised: Contemporary Issues in Social Justice - FSEM 100-201 (CRN 8375)

This course is designed to explore the interconnectedness of diversity, identity, and social justice in modern, urban, industrial and global societies. In this course, we will use a multidisciplinary approach to gain insight into the socio-cultural context of identity, including the philosophical and historical bases of social justice and diversity at large. Through various media like music videos, documentaries and text, this course seeks to provide students with the knowledge, skills and attitudes that will prepare them to be sensitive to individual and cultural differences as well as interrogate structural barriers and bridges that impact equity.

Your Professor

Akeem Todman can be described as adept, ardent and ambitious. With eight years of experience in the realm of education, from teaching to program analysis, He has committed himself to promoting academic excellence through a student-centric, culturally relevant pedagogy. He has earned a BA in communication arts with a focus in organizational communication, and an MS in higher education administration from Florida International University; and is currently pursuing his EdD in educational leadership/administration at Florida State University. His professional passion is creating discourse that will lead to action and make the learning experience more accessible, equitable and inclusive for all students. y. In his free time, you can catch Akeem reading, eating or listening to music — specifically Jazz, R&B and southern Hip-Hop/Rap.

The Search for Wisdom - FSEM 100-09 (CRN 4626)

You don't tug on Superman's cape. You don't spit into the wind. (Jim Croce)

A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing personal opinion. (Proverbs)

Never insult an alligator until after you have crossed the river. (Cordell Hull)

Ancient seekers of wisdom believed that there was meaning in human existence. If you found the rhythms of life, success followed. Other thinkers were less positive. No matter how hard you try, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose.  As did the sages of old, students will enter the ageless quest for wisdom. We'll explore the traditions of the ancient Near East including that of the biblical texts. We'll look to wisdom traditions within world religions and consider contemporary expression of wisdom themes. The worldview of wisdom, as a social movement and as language and literature, will provide students a blueprint for developing their own guide for finding meaning in life. This course counts toward the Writing Requirement.

Your Professor

Carmen Palmer, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, and specializes in the study of the Hebrew Bible and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Prior to teaching at Stetson, she taught in the areas of biblical studies and global citizenship at a number of colleges in Canada. She is interested in understanding the communities behind ancient texts and their sociohistorical settings, as well as how individuals come to join communities. She serves as the Chair of the International Cooperation Initiative Committee for the Society of Biblical Literature, where she learns much from the wisdom of other global contexts and communities.

The Spirit of Travel FSEM 100-83 (CRN 6126)

In this course, we'll look at the relationship between travel and spirit, in other words, the relationship between outer journeys and the inner ones. Pilgrimages have long been a part of religious and cultural traditions. Consider, for example, the centuries of trips to the Holy Land, Mecca, Bodh Gaya, Lourdes and Santiago de Compostela. Think about secular pilgrimages to places like the Baseball Hall of Fame, the Vietnam War Memorial or Graceland. Besides pilgrimages to one specific place, many travelers have more free-ranging objectives: for example, the Australian walkabout or even the post-college rite of backpacking around Europe.

Why is travel such a catalyst for spiritual growth? In this course, we'll focus on the ways in which travel--especially unpredictable travel outside one's comfort zone--has an effect on the spirit. We'll read books and essays—fiction and non-fiction—and watch movies and videos, alas jumping-off points for thoughtful insights, discussions, and writings about the spiritual transformations of travel.

Your Professor

Nancy Barber has been a lecturer at Stetson University since 1998. She majored in political science at Davidson College, then worked as a journalist before getting an MA in English at Stetson, and an MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Florida. Barber specializes in creative nonfiction. Among her other writings, she published an essay on human cannonballs in Raritan Quarterly in 2006 and co-wrote Meals Worth Stopping for in Florida: Local Restaurants within 10 Miles of the Interstate, published by Globe Pequot Press in 2008. She is also a veteran of both sacred and secular pilgrimages.

Virtual Reality in Business - FSEM 100-205 (CRN 8403)

This course provides an introduction to immersive technologies (virtual, augmented and mixed reality) and their application in business and society. Students will learn how these technologies have enhanced today's world by studying their use in everyday life and across a variety of industries including retail, education, healthcare, entertainment, sports, real estate, hospitality, manufacturing, military, and law enforcement. In addition, students will research and conceptualize a real-world virtual reality application that can be used to overcome challenges currently faced by business or society.

Your Professor

William Sause is an Assistant Professor of Practice in the Department of Business Systems and Analytics at Stetson’s School of Business. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University and has over fifteen years of professional experience as a software developer for corporations such as Lockheed Martin and McKesson. At Stetson’s School of Business, Dr. Sause teaches courses in programming, databases and big data, management information systems, and spreadsheet modeling. His research interests include virtual environments for e-learning and data visualization, software development, and artificial intelligence. Dr. Sause also serves as the Brown Center Fellow for Digital and Remote Learning where he consults with faculty colleagues on the transition to online delivery of classes and promotes faculty development in digital and remote learning.

Women in Business - FSEM 100-195 (CRN 8318)

Course Description

This course is an interdisciplinary introduction that takes a global perspective on gender equality, feminism and workplace issues that affect women. Theories about gender differences, workforce discrimination and the legal framework for equity at work will be explored while looking at the position of women in the workplace from a global perspective. The course encourages reflective practice, critical thinking, collaboration and creativity. Writing as an inquiry-oriented and developmental process will be emphasized, along with oral communication with attention applied to critical thinking.

Course Concepts

• Workforce women
• Segregation
• Gender differences
• Employment discrimination
• Networks
• Mentors
• Communications
• Hostile environments
• Sexual harassment
• Life balance
• Women entrepreneurs
• Policies and practices

Your Professor

Meg Young, DBA, is a proud first-generation college graduate and faculty member. Her teaching philosophy is simple: to change the world for the better, one student at a time. Relationships matter!

Writing the Revolution: Civic Engagement and Rhetoric - FSEM 100-51 (CRN 5251)

First-Year Seminars (FSEMs) are part of the university's mission to acclimate you to the academic standards and practices of this institution, particularly in reference to writing and critical thinking. This is a one-unit/four-credit course. Learn more about the workload expectations for this course.

Regardless of political orientation, class, nationality (or any perspective that informs a worldview), everyone is in agreement that something is wrong with the “system." As we examine a wide range of historical reform figures and their strategies to effect social and institutional change (i.e., Lycurgus, Cicero, Not Sure, Oge´, and anonymous), you will work to emulate and/or adapt these models to achieve some degree of measurable civic improvement, either in a local or national context. Although this course is geared toward social action, it is also a writing course, which means that a premium is placed on refining your communicative fluency. To achieve this goal, a portfolio of your revised work is required (e.g. a comprehensive collection of all your course papers/drafts). The purpose of this course is

  • to improve your ability to argue in writing,
  • to analyze persuasive methods, and
  • to provide historical/social contexts for your assignments that enable you to offer informed, convincing and critical arguments.

The course will incorporate some aspects of a traditional lecture, but dialogue/interaction is expected, since we will engage in many oral debates that will affect the content and revisions of your portfolio. 

In this class, critical thinking is embedded within the rhetorical process (e.g. by examining how authors/historians use tropes, for example, you learn how arguments become convincing. By applying these strategies yourselves, you then internalize these creative and critical processes. These rhetorical strategies are evaluated in all of your papers as you model sources and use similar approaches.

Your Professor

While intermittently working on his graduate degrees (Clemson, MA, English; University of South Carolina, PhD, Composition and Rhetoric), Michael Barnes taught, wrote and traveled in the Far East, calling Tokyo home for four years. Tenured at Stetson University in 2006, his current research interests focus on computer-facilitated empirical studies on academia via overlooked institutional artifacts (textbooks, internal communiques and so forth). Pedagogically a sophist, most of his courses push students to "argue both sides equally well."

Enduring Questions (Honors Only) - HON 101-01 (CRN 5706)

>This Honors First Year Seminar explores the following question: “Why prison?” We return to this question throughout the semester, and will explore additional sub-questions together, including What do prisons teach us about society? What do prisons and policing teach about the historical legacies of racial violence in the United States? What do prisons teach us about (in)justice? What does studying prisons teach us about ourselves?

Your Professor

Information coming soon.

Enduring Questions (Honors Only) - HON 101-02 (CRN 5707)

This Honors First Year Seminar explores the following question: “Why prison?” We return to this question throughout the semester, and will explore additional sub-questions together, including: What do prisons teach us about society? What do prisons and policing teach about the historical legacies of racial violence in the United States? What do prisons teach us about (in)justice? What does studying prisons teach us about ourselves?

Your Professor

Information coming soon.

Enduring Questions (Honors Only) - HON 101-03 (CRN 5708)

This Honors First Year Seminar explores the following question: “Why prison?” We return to this question throughout the semester, and will explore additional sub-questions together, including: What do prisons teach us about society? What do prisons and policing teach about the historical legacies of racial violence in the United States? What do prisons teach us about (in)justice? What does studying prisons teach us about ourselves?

Your Professor

Information coming soon.

Principles and Methods of Instruction for Diverse Learners - Music - MUED 265-01(CRN# 7402)

Introduction to Music Education: Principles and Methods of Diverse Learners is an introductory course that provides a foundation for upper-division coursework in education. Emphasis will include research-based literature on teacher effectiveness and student learning with classroom observations/participation. This course is designed to help music majors explore the historical, philosophical and social foundations of music education while examining issues that focus on music curricula, goals and objectives of music programs and the many aspects involved in teaching music. Teacher effectiveness and student learning are demonstrated through classroom observations and instruction.

Your Professor

John A. Lychner is Director of Music Education in the School of Music at Stetson University. He teaches classes in music education, supervises intern teachers, serves as an academic advisor as well as the advisor for the collegiate NAfME chapter, and is active as a clinician and conductor. Prior to coming to Stetson, Dr. Lychner was Professor of Music in the School of Music at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo.

Lychner earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Northeast Missouri State University (now Truman State University) and was then awarded a Rotary International Foundation Scholarship to continue studies in music and education at the University of Nottingham in Nottingham, England. He taught band, choir and general music in the Lindbergh School District in St. Louis, Missouri. He received a Master of Arts from Northeast Missouri State University where he was the principal conductor for the University Concert Band and then went on to complete a PhD at Florida State University in Music Education. While in Tallahassee, Lychner was also assistant director of Bands at Rickards High School and woodwind coach and rehearsal assistant with the Tallahassee Symphony Youth Orchestra. During his career, he has also worked as a summer music camp instructor, church organist and church choir director.

Lychner has served in a variety of leadership roles with the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), including national Chair for two Special Research Interest Groups and President for the Michigan Music Educators Association, the Michigan affiliate of NAfME. He was also a member of the Production Staff for the International Association for Jazz Education annual convention.

His research in the areas of aesthetic response to music and teacher education has been published in the Journal of Research in Music Education, the International Journal of Music Education: Research, and the Journal of Band Research, among others. He has also been published in several volumes of the series Teaching Music Through Performance in Band and has written articles for the Music Educators Journal, The Michigan Music Educator and The Instrumentalist.

Principles and Methods of Instruction for Diverse Learners - Music - MUED 265-02 (CRN# 7403)

Introduction to Music Education: Principles and Methods of Diverse Learners is an introductory course that provides a foundation for upper-division coursework in education. Emphasis will include research-based literature on teacher effectiveness and student learning with classroom observations/participation. This course is designed to help music majors explore the historical, philosophical and social foundations of music education while examining issues that focus on music curricula, goals and objectives of music programs and the many aspects involved in teaching music. Teacher effectiveness and student learning are demonstrated through classroom observations and instruction.

Your Professor

Gregory W. LeFils Jr., PhD, is a visiting assistant professor of choral music education at Stetson University. His duties include teaching music education classes and supervising student teachers. LeFils holds a PhD in music education from Florida State University where his teaching included assisting with music education, conducting and graduate choral literature classes. As a conductor, he was the assistant conductor of various choral ensembles including the Women's Glee Club, Choral Union, Chamber Choir and the Tallahassee Community Chorus.

LeFils' professional experience includes directing two secondary choral music programs in Florida, conducting The Orlando Chorale and The Orlando Chamber Choir, and singing/soloing with the Festival Singers of Florida. His research interests include teacher effectiveness, music teacher curriculum and training, incorporating elements of teamwork into rehearsals, choral improvisation and choral history. LeFils has presented research and educational clinics throughout the region including the annual conferences of Music Education Associations in Alabama and Florida and other workshops for music educators in central Florida. His dissertation is entitled The History of the Stetson University Concert Choir. In addition to his roles as researcher and educator, LeFils maintains an active agenda as a speaker, clinician and adjudicator across the region.