I am a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of History. I generally teach the early and modern American survey courses, HI251 and HI252. Many of my classes are part of the First Year Inquiry Program (Q courses) focusing on small freshmen seminar-type classes with an emphasis on critical thinking skills. Some of my FYI courses are reserved for First Year College students, and I am also a Faculty Fellow in FYC. My husband is an Associate Professor in the Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management on campus. I grew up in Detroit, Michigan, and did my undergraduate work at Michigan State University earning a B.S. in interior design. My M.F.A. is from the University of Florida, and my Ph.D. in history is from the University of New Hampshire. I have been teaching at NC State since 1991.
- My Program
- Advice for Students
- Advice for Faculty Directors
Where do you lead a program?
I lead a Study Abroad program to London and Paris. The addition of Paris is new to the London Program which has been running for the past twenty years. Previously the program has spent the entire four weeks in London. This summer, 2008, we will be in London for a week, then two weeks in Paris, and back in London for the final week.
How long have you run your study abroad program?
I have been part of the London Experience for ten years. I responded to a flyer asking faculty if they wouldn’t rather be teaching in London instead of Raleigh during the summer. I put a proposal together, it was accepted, and the rest is history!! I have taught with wonderful faculty over the past ten years. This summer, Mike Peters, a second year Master of Public History student will be working with me. Mike went on the program as a student, then an assistant, and now as teacher and administrator.
What makes your study abroad program unique?
We have been the only program focusing on the arts of London as well as how Great Britain viewed the War for American Independence. Now with Paris included too, we are looking at two of the greatest cities for art and architecture, and the two cities/countries who had the most impact on the creation of the United States.
What stands out as your favorite memory from the study abroad programs that you have directed?
There are so many wonderful memories over the past ten years. Certainly tops are the great students who I have had the pleasure to meet and watch grow. Also, friendships that have developed with the people I have worked with in London. Finally I guess the wonderful performances we have been able to see.
If you could give prospective students one piece of advice about
study abroad, what would it be?
Don’t be intimidated by the cost. Work with the Study Abroad office to see about scholarships, check about financial aid. When you calculate how much it would cost to spend at summer on campus and take six credit hours, the cost differential isn’t that great. And, it’s an experience that cannot be duplicated.
What are you looking for from the students who apply to your program?
Students who apply to the London/Paris Experience need to be self-motivated. The two cities are our textbook, so a great deal of emphasis is placed on the students to explore the art and history of the city on their own outside of class.
What is the most rewarding aspect of being a Faculty Director?
The most rewarding part of being a Faculty Director is seeing students, many of whom have never been out of North Carolina, fall in love with London so much that, by the time the program is over, they are working on ways to come back. And they want to return not just to London, but they can’t wait to explore other cities/countries. The program gives them the confidence to expand their horizons even more. It’s wonderful.
If you could give new Faculty Directors of study abroad programs one piece of advice about leading a program, what would it be?
Have another adult you can talk to on the trip maybe as an additional faculty member, someone you know on site, or perhaps a spouse who comes along.
What marketing tips would you suggest to your fellow Faculty Directors to encourage more NC State students to study abroad?
The greatest marketing tool for this program is the Study Abroad Fair. From the names generated I e-mail the students regularly with reminders about deadlines, information about the classes, trivia about London/Paris to keep their interest up. We also have one or two general information sessions in the fall semester, and if needed, in the spring as well.