Global Studies

global studies

If you minor in Global Studies at Saint Michael's, you will be offered the chance to take courses in a variety of disciplines that investigate aspects of globalization including political science, economics, journalism, geography, sociology and anthropology, linguistics, and history.

You will take Foundations of Global Studies along with a chosen set of electives that will help you develop an understanding of the impact of technologies on cultural, political, geographical, and economic systems worldwide. You will also acquire an understanding of communities through learning what creates, builds (and rebuilds), sustains, threatens and destroys communities of all types and sizes.

Courses in journalism, sociology and political science, for instance, will provide you with opportunities to develop a heightened awareness of media systems and communication models as well as a deepened understanding of the social, political and economic processes and institutions.

Courses in languages, linguistics, anthropology and history, for example, will provide the opportunity for you to become sensitive, informed global communicators, to explore the conflicting as well as complementary relationships between language, culture and community as they encounter the pressures of globalization. 

Jeffrey Ayres, PhD

Professor of Political Science and Dean of the College
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B.A. University of Virginia
M.A. and Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Madison

Areas of Expertise:

Globalization, Global and Regional Governance, International Relations, Social Movements and Contentious Politics, Canadian and North American Politics

Courses I Teach:

  • Globalization and Resistance
  • Global Governance
  • Global Problems
  • International Relations
  • Politics of the World Economy
  • Social Movements and Contentious Politics
  • U.S. Foreign Policy

Michael Bosia, PhD

Associate Professor of Political Science
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M.A., Ph.D. Northwestern University
B.A. California State University

Courses I Teach:

  • Democratic Transitions
  • Film and Politics
  • France and Empire
  • Introduction to Comparative Politics
  • State Violence and Justice
  • The Politics of Multiethnic Societies

My Saint Michael's:

Staying focused on the ethics of political action keeps me grounded in events, and working with students helps me evaluate my research, assess my writing, and share my interests in a critical way with students as they develop their own sense of ethics and knowledge. Before starting doctoral studies, I was a staff director in the California State Senate working with communities affected by HIV/AIDS, which drove my interest in marginalization, social movements, and the state. At Saint Michael's, I have worked with faculty, staff, and students to mark World AIDS Day and the anniversary of the war in Iraq. 

I am interested in politics at the intersection of global social movements and the nation-state. This includes activism addressing issues of identity, like race, gender, and sexuality, questions of marginalization and citizenship, and processes of community building and participation, such as those evident in responses to the HIV/AIDS pandemic and more recently in the new politics of food.  These concerns touch on theories of democratic practice, postcolonial politics, economic and political reform, and political accountability.  As well, they are specifically linked to the ethical nature of politics, and the role of culture, myths, and stories in social action. I am active in both the American Political Science Association and the International Studies Association where I have organized panels of scholarly research and roundtables on topics important to the profession.  I have served as Program Chair and am currently President of the Organized Section on Sexuality and Politics at APSA.  I also speak frequently in the community and on campuses about the politics of food, in particular, the emerging food system in Hardwick, Vermont, where I am co-owner of Claire's Restaurant and Bar.

Patricia Delaney, PhD

Gender Studies Program Director, Sociology and Anthropology Department Chair, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Gender Studies
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M.A., Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles
B.S. Georgetown University

Areas of Expertise:

Gender and international development; war, conflict, and the contestation of cultural identity; relief to development continuum; poverty and stratification in the global south; grassroots development and participatory approaches; East Timor; Lusophone Africa 

Courses I Teach:

  • Anthropological Perspectives on Gender
  • Gender and International Development
  • Introductory Anthropology
  • Participatory Action Research
  • People and Cultures of the Lusuphone World
  • Life Histories

Laurie Gagne, PhD

Director, Edmundite Center for Peace and Justice
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Ph.D. in Theology,  University of Notre Dame
B.A. in Religious Studies, Pomona College

Courses I Teach:

  • FS 153: First Year Seminar: Peace and Justice
  • PJ 101: Approaches to Peace
  • PJ 410: War and Peace in World Religions
  • Special Topics: Catholic Social Teaching

Jon Hyde, PhD

Associate Professor of Media Studies, Journalism and Digital Arts; Director, Global Studies Program
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M.A., Ph.D. New York University
B.A. Carleton College

Courses I Teach:

  • Digital Film
  • Global Communication
  • Multi-media Design
  • Photography

Additionally, I direct graduate research projects in media education and media literacy.

Professional Experiences:

Prior to teaching at Saint Michael's, I worked in New York City as a journalist, digital animator, and a media developer at the Media Workshop New York, a non-profit organization devoted to issues of media education and media literacy.

Katherine Kirby, PhD

Associate Professor of Philosophy and Global Studies
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M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D. Fordham University
B.A. Salisbury State University

Areas of Expertise:

Ethics (including the philosophical ethics tradition, metaethics, applied ethics); Emmanuel Levinas (French postmodern ethicist); Continental Philosophy; Global Studies

Courses I Teach:

  • Ethics
  • Ethics of the Heroic
  • First-Year Seminar: Global Studies
  • Foundations of Global Studies
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Otherness and Marginalization: Levinas and the Alienated
  • Truth and Propaganda: Ethics and the Media

My Saint Michael's:

I've become a huge proponent of service-learning courses, wherein there is practical engagement with the community that breathes a certain life into the texts we read and discuss. I find that service-learning opportunities set the stage for a close philosophical (phenomenological) exploration of our lived experiences, especially in courses that challenge students to think about ethical or moral responsibility and engagement.

Joseph Kroger, PhD

Professor of Religious Studies
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Ph.D. McMaster University
M.A. St. Louis University
B. A. University of Dayton

Areas of Expertise and Scholarly Interests:

Christianity’s encounter and dialogue with other cultures and religions; Christianity in Latin America, specifically Liberation Theology in Central America and Catholic Christianity in Mexico; Mesoamerican culture and religion; Philosophical foundations of Hinduism and Buddhism, Michael Polanyi’s Thought on Science and Religion.

Courses I Teach:

  • Aztec Goddesses and Christian Madonnas of Mexico
  • Buddhist Religious Thought
  • Christianity and World Religions in Dialogue
  • Hindu Religious Thought
  • Liberation Theology
  • Varieties of Christianity

Richard Kujawa, PhD

Economics Department Chair, Human Geography Minor Coordinator, Professor of Geography
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M.A., Ph.D. University of Iowa
B.Sc. Brunel University, London

Courses I Teach:

  • Introduction to Human Geography
  • Urban Geography
  • Political Geography
  • Economic Geography
  • The Geography of Water
  • Environmental Policy
  • Environmental Studies
  • Urban and Regional Planning

My Saint Michael's:

In my classes, advising and in the human geography program, one-on-one contact is encouraged. I encourage students to present their findings to external audiences and professional conferences. I help students with graduate school applications (especially those in Urban and Regional Planning). In the past few years, I have helped Saint Michael's graduates successfully apply to Cornell, Rutgers, SUNY-Albany, Kansas State University, the University of Iowa and several others. I also have some connections for internships in the local area.

Hands down, my favorite thing about this college is the class sizes. At Saint Mike's I am able to shorten the distance between my role as faculty member and expert, and my role as motivator and mentor. I see part of my job as a salesperson for the power of intellectual growth and lifelong learning. I work hard each and every day to make the sale!

Adrie Kusserow, PhD

Professor of Anthropology
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Ph.D. Harvard University (Anthropology)
M.T.S. Harvard Divinity School (Tibetan Buddhism)
B.A. Amherst College, Phi Beta Kappa

Areas of Expertise:

Medical and Psychiatric Anthropology, Refugees, Globalization and Poverty, Modern Day Slavery, Anthropology of Refugees, Anthropology of Religion, Social Class in America, Anthropology of Global Media

Courses I Teach:

  • Culture Illness and Healing
  • Modern Day Slavery and Human Trafficking
  • Refugees
  • Social Inequalities

Motivations:

I am a cultural anthropologist with special interests in refugees, social inequalities, poverty, anthropology of religion, culture, illness and healing, social class, ethnographic poetry and anthropology of the child. I strongly encourage both service work and community engaged learning to be an integral part of my anthropology classes. I am also a strong proponent of study abroad and have taken students to Sudan, Uganda and Bhutan.

Robert Letovsky, PhD

Business Administration and Accounting Department Chair, Professor of Business Administration and Accounting
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Ph.D. Concordia University
M.B.A. University of Toronto
B.Comm. McGill University

Areas of Expertise:

Case development focusing on business/government relations and sustainability

Courses I Teach:

  • Business Policy & Strategic Management
  • International Business
  • International Marketing
  • Marketing

My favorite class to teach is International Business because it focuses on the nexus between business and public policy. The course gives students an opportunity to see the connections between the right kinds of public policy and economic development, and the wrong kinds of public policy and economic hardship. The course also focuses on the global trading system and is the gateway for students to understand the role that free trade and open markets has played in reducing poverty and promoting economic progress.

Carolyn Lukens-Olson, PhD

Associate Professor of Modern Languages: Spanish
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Ph.D., M.A. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
B.A. Ohio University

Tara Natarajan, PhD

Associate Professor of Economics
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Ph.D. University of Nebraska at Lincoln
M.A. University of Bombay, India
B.A. Sophia College, India

Areas of Expertise:

Applied research on development and poverty: food, agrarian change, capitalist transformation, development activism in India.

Courses I Teach:

  • Development Economics
  • History of Economic Thought and Policy
  • Microeconomic Theory
  • Senior Seminar
  • World Economies

My Saint Michael's:

I like the fact that my students and I have a truly meaningful student-teacher relationship. They know me and I know them. Our college engenders mentoring as an ethos which when combined with manageable class sizes, makes it really possible for me to contact students personally and let them know that I care, not only about their understanding of the subject but also their well-being as a person through their educational experience.

After 10 years of being a faculty member here, I have realized how much this connection with students, matters to me. The kind of personal investment we make in each one of our students is a mutually reinforcing process between students, faculty and all those who are connected with students outside of classes as well, all of which is embedded in our evolving institutional ethos and collective values.

Elizabeth O'Dowd, PhD

Professor of Applied Linguistics/TESOL
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M.A., Ph.D. University of Colorado at Boulder
M.A. New Mexico State University
B.A. University of Lancaster, England

Areas of Expertise:

Teaching English to speakers of other languages; English grammar and discourse structure; World English

Courses I Teach:

  • Bilingualism and Multicultural Education
  • English Grammar
  • Introduction to Language and Linguistics

My Saint Michael's:

Saint Michael's is a small enough community that you know most people you see when you cross campus. But it's large enough that we have a great variety of research interests and expertise, as well as the opportunity to hook up for cross-disciplinary work. The faith-based tradition allows faculty and students to explore moral issues and clarify their values more holistically than you would find at a public academic institution.

My students seem the most inspired when they are learning how different languages work - for example, how the same "word" said with different tones in Chinese or Vietnamese might mean five completely different things; or learning about "mystery" languages like Basque, which has no known relatives and is nothing like its neighboring languages, French and Spanish.

What I like most about Saint Michael’s students is their commitment to service - at least 70 percent of them do some kind of outreach either through their coursework or voluntarily - and their close solidarity with each other.

Since the Applied Linguistics Department deals with teaching English as a second or international language, it is the best place to make friends with international students, whether graduate, undergraduate, or short-stay intensive English students. Because we're also a receiving center for Fulbright scholarships, some of our students come from countries that rarely send visitors to the U.S. - for example, Niger, Afghanistan, Mozambique, Iraq, Rwanda, Palestine, and Turkmenistan, to name a few.

Reza Ramazani, PhD

Professor of Economics
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M.A., Ph.D. University of Colorado, Boulder
B.A. Ghazvin College of Economics, Iran

Courses I Teach

In addition to the introductory courses in economics, I teach upper level Macroeconomic Theory, Statistics for Economics, Senior Seminar and several electives such as International Economics, and Environmental Economics.

Patricia Siplon, PhD

Professor of Political Science
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Ph.D. Brandeis University
B.S., M.S. Utah State University

Areas of Expertise:

HIV/AIDS; health policy in developing countries; U.S. domestic and international health policy and foreign aid policy; sub-Saharan Africa (particularly Tanzania). : I am a long-time AIDS scholar and activist and I am the faculty adviser to Saint Michael's chapter of the Student Global AIDS Campaign (SGAC).

Courses I Teach:

  • Introduction to American National Politics
  • Research Methods
  • Global Politics of the AIDS Pandemic
  • First Year Seminar: Global Studies
  • Intro to Public Policy; HIV/AIDS in East Africa
  • Parties, Elections and Political Participation
  • Senior Seminar: African Politics
  • US Health Policy

My Saint Michael's:

People here take the mission of the college seriously. We sometimes debate the meaning of the mission, but even that suggests to me that we care about what it means and how we make it come to life on campus. Saint Michael's College has been very supportive of my attempts to integrate my teaching, scholarship and service into everything I do. I feel like I have the opportunity to build on the great work of others who have been here longer than me and who have been working on social justice in and outside of the classroom for many years. I also appreciate the chance to work intensively with students who are interested in going beyond the material taught in a class to do service and experiential learning, as well as research and advocacy work.

I like to think that many of the students in my classes and in political science generally are there because they want to help improve the world, and they're interested in learning the tools for doing that. I appreciate that so many of them are open to new ideas and growth opportunities while they are here.

My favorite course to teach is PO 351-- Politics of the Global AIDS Pandemic. This course lets me combine my strongest interests as a teacher, a researcher and an activist. It draws students from all kinds of majors, and gives us all an opportunity to have an extended, semester-long conversation about a critical global problem, and what we plan to do about it.

I think that both PO 351-- Global Politics of AIDS and PO 352-- HIV/AIDS in East Africa are pretty unique opportunities for students. Both allow students to look at a very important issue in depth, and both give students opportunities to put their knowledge into action through advocacy and service learning. PO 351 is a prerequisite for PO 352, which actually takes students to East Africa for a 2-3 week period. I have also done many independent study and independent research projects with students who got interested through these classes and wanted to keep going.

Lorrie Smith, PhD

American Studies Program Director, Professor of English and American Studies
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M.A., Ph.D. Brown University
B.A. University of Massachusetts-Boston

Areas of Expertise:

African American literature, especially poetry

Courses I Teach:

  • African American Literature
  • American Literature I and II
  • First-Year Seminar on Race and Culture
  • Genres: Poetry; Senior Seminar on various topics (latest: Literature and the Blues)
  • The Middle Passage (Transatlantic Slave Trade in History, Memory, and Imagination)

My Saint Michael's:

My classes offer the opportunity to engage students in discussions of race, racism, African American literature and history. I have worked hard to develop strategies for safely approaching what can often be loaded material that challenges students' comfort zones. I often incorporate experiences that combine classroom study with activities in the community. This includes overnight field trips to Charlestown, Massachusetts with my First-Year Seminar course and a three-week service-learning program in Ghana with students from my Middle Passage class. Through these cross-cultural encounters, students have a chance to examine and enlarge their own perspectives. I am also a faculty member in the college’s American Studies program.

There is a real commitment here to teach the whole student. I enjoy having a chance to shape hungry young minds and develop personal relationships with students. Saint Michael's students have open minds and good hearts. They are very empathetic, kind, and friendly, and many are interested in finding ways to connect what they learn in classes to the larger world. They also have a strong desire to contribute to the community through service. My favorite class to teach is African-American Literature and The Middle Passage, because it's a chance to introduce our students to a tradition they know little about, and to push their comfort zones.

Kimberly Sultze, PhD

Associate Professor of Media Studies, Journalism and Digital Arts
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M.A., Ph.D. New York University
B.A. Carleton College

I came to Saint Michael's from New York University, where I taught in the Department of Culture and Communication, Program in Media Ecology.

Professional Experience:

Prior to earning my academic credentials, I worked in print journalism at The Independent Monthly in Sydney, in television production at KTCA-TV/Twin Cities Public Television, and as an editor with FIS-New York. In 1994, I served as planning director for the Institute on Media Literacy and Education. I have traveled and performed research in Sri Lanka, India, Egypt, Israel, Australia and New Zealand.

Areas of Expertise:

My teaching and research interests include visual communication (digital imaging, photography, film, video and Web design); intercultural communication; the history, criticism, and theory of communication; and the cultural implications of new media techniques and technologies.

Courses I Teach:

  • New Media I and II
  • Senior Seminar
  • Feature Writing: Nature and the Outdoors.

As a Global Studies minor, you will be able to gain deepened perspectives on global issues through international study or service-learning opportunities linked to global peace and justice issues.

Many of our minors study abroad in places like France, China, and Uganda, and are a part of Saint Michael's Peace and Justice Club that holds events on and off campus to raise awareness about global issues. One example of such an event happens ever semester as members of the club hold coffee hours at 2:00 am for the night-shift custodians to call attention to the issue of livable wages. 

And because Global Studies deals with worldwide issues, you will also be able to enhance your proficiency in a second language taking classes in a foreign language or linguistics. 

Many of our students who minor in Global Studies often enter the political field or pursue an advanced degree in Law or International Affairs. Some students also decide to enter into the non-profit and service sectors, working with AmeriCorps or the Peace Corps.

A minor in Global Studies will provide you with a solid background in the vocabulary and theory of globalization as well as a forum for discussion of such issues all of which are skills that prove valuable in political, diplomatic, and non-profit career fields. 

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