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Charles River Campus Faculty Receive Promotions, Tenure

Humanities, sciences, social sciences represented

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From colonial American art to childhood learning, from nanomaterials to religious education, the latest faculty promotions on the Charles River Campus span the breadth of human knowledge.

Promotion to associate professor with tenure went to 19 faculty members, while another was promoted to full professor and yet another to non-tenure-track associate professor. “The professors we recognize with these well-deserved promotions,” says Jean Morrison, BU provost, “are pushing the boundaries of their disciplines, developing new, life-changing technologies, evolving our approaches to business and economic policy, and producing writings across the humanities and social sciences that enhance our understanding of the world.”

Promoted to associate professor with tenure:

Ross Barrett (GRS’09), College of Arts & Sciences associate professor of history of art and architecture

Barrett studies American art from the colonial period through the 20th century and how it was affected by cultural, political, and economic changes in the country. His writings include Rendering Violence: Riots, Strikes, and Upheaval in Nineteenth-Century American Art (University of California Press, 2014). His several grants and awards include the Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize and the Nineteenth Century Studies Association Emerging Scholars Award.

Taylor Boas, CAS associate professor of political science

Boas specializes in various aspects of Latin American politics—campaigns, corruption, religion, and mass media. His books include Presidential Campaigns in Latin America: Electoral Strategies and Success Contagion (Cambridge University Press, 2016).

Catherine Connell, CAS associate professor of sociology

Connell’s research is focused on the dynamics of social inequality through the prism of gender, sexuality, and work and organizations. Director of the CAS Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies program, she wrote School’s Out: Gays and Lesbians in the Classroom (University of California Press, 2014). A past winner of the CAS Wisneski Award for Excellence in Teaching, she was recently elected chair of the American Sociological Society’s Section on Sexualities.

Alisdair McKay, CAS associate professor of economics

McKay, an expert on household heterogeneity’s effects on the business cycle, is associate editor of the Journal of Monetary Economics and a faculty research fellow with the National Bureau of Economic Research, known for declaring the beginning and end dates for US recessions.

Manjari Chatterjee Miller, CAS associate professor of international relations and Pardee School of Global Studies associate professor of international relations

Miller specializes in foreign policy and security studies, especially involving South Asia and China. She has received grants from the East-West Center, the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, the South Asia Institute, the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, the Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs, and the US Department of Education. She is the author of Wronged by Empire: Post-Imperial Ideology and Foreign Policy Studies in India and China (Stanford University Press, 2013).

Joseph Rezek, CAS associate professor of English

Rezek, a historian of books and their development, researches how print technology affected late 18th- and early 19th-century English language literature and the culture of the English-speaking world. He has received funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and is the author of London and the Making of Provincial Literature: Aesthetics and the Transatlantic Book Trade, 1800-1850 (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015). He is cofounder of the Boston Area Romanticist Colloquium and associate editor of Studies in Romanticism, published at BU since 1961.

Johannes Schmieder, CAS associate professor of economics

Schmieder is an expert in environmental and labor economics, with research focused on unemployment insurance, outsourcing, and job search and matching. He is a past Peter Paul Career Development Professor and has received grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Jared Weinstein, CAS associate professor of mathematics and statistics

Weinstein specializes in number theory and abstract algebraic structures. He has received numerous NSF grants and is a current Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow. His research about rational points on elliptic curves in Galois theory is recognized for its implications for error-fixing codes in engineering.

Paul Withers, CAS associate professor of astronomy

Withers studies planets’ upper atmosphere and ionosphere, using radio science instruments and developing theoretical models to discover interacting physical properties under the unique conditions of each planet. Credited with reinvigorating the field of radio occultation experiments, he has received numerous NSF and NASA grants to study Earth, Saturn, Mars, and Venus. He also has received several NASA achievement awards.

Jacob Groshek, College of Communication associate professor of emerging media studies

Groshek researches how online and mobile media technologies can influence social and political change. He is founding editor of the Journal of Communication and Technology and is a Rafik B. Hariri Institute for Computing and Computational Science & Engineering junior faculty fellow. He also oversees a cloud-based software system, the BU Twitter Collection and Analysis Toolkit, that allows all BU faculty and students to study social media in big and small data approaches.

Scott Bunch, College of Engineering associate professor of mechanical engineering and of materials science and engineering

Bunch is an expert on the nanomechanical properties of a new class of 2-D atomically thin materials like graphene. He is creating novel devices that test these materials’ physical properties, devices that have potential for important societal challenges, such as water quality. He is a past recipient of an NSF CAREER Award.

Xue Han, ENG associate professor of biomedical engineering

Han’s area of expertise is neurotechnology. She develops genetic, molecular, pharmacological, optical, and electrical tools for treating brain disorders and fixing neural circuitry. She is a former Peter Paul Career Development Professor and the winner of a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, as well as of BU’s GWISE Mentor of the Year Award. Her research has been funded by the NSF, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Academy of Engineering.

Keith Ericson, Questrom School of Business associate professor of markets, public policy, and law

Ericson studies the financial underpinnings of the US health care system and the interplay of psychology and economic decision-making. A leading expert on the operation of health exchanges, he is a past recipient of Questrom’s Broderick Award for Outstanding Contributions to Research.

Remi Trudel, Questrom associate professor of marketing

Trudel researches consumer decision-making in the areas of sustainability, health and diet, and personal finance, aiming to help them, marketers, and policymakers to make better choices for themselves, society, and the environment. He has received Questrom’s Broderick Award for Outstanding Contributions to Research and the 2015 Broderick Prize for Outstanding Faculty Contribution to the Doctoral Community and Program.

Simone Gill, Sargent College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences associate professor of occupational therapy

Gill studies how individuals’ traits, from obesity to environmental demands, influence their walking and motor functioning throughout life. Director of BU’s Motor Development Laboratory, she has received grants from the NIH and the American Diabetes Association. She has a joint position with the BU School of Medicine.

Kathleen Corriveau, School of Education associate professor of human development

Corriveau is an expert on children’s cognitive and social development and how they determine trustworthy sources of information. A recipient of NSF funding, she is a past Peter Paul Career Development Professor and was honored as a “Rising Star” by the Association for Psychological Science. She directs SED’s Social Learning Laboratory.

Melissa Holt, SED associate professor of counseling psychology

Holt studies youth victims of violence, especially bullying, and how their experiences affect their development and life chances. She also studies the efficacy of school-based violence prevention programs. She has won two American Educational Research Association awards and SED’s Excellence in Graduate Advising Award, and she contributed to The Wiley-Blackwell Handbook on the Psychology of Violence (Wiley-Blackwell, 2016). Before joining SED, Holt was a behavioral scientist in the division of violence prevention at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Daniel Miller, School of Social Work associate professor of human behavior in the social environment

Miller’s research is centered on childhood obesity, food insecurity, and the impact of fathers’ involvement on children in low-income households. A recipient of grants from the William T. Grant Foundation and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation of Massachusetts, he has been honored with an Excellence in Research award from the Society for Social Work and Research.

Courtney Goto, School of Theology associate professor of religious education

Goto studies the role of arts and aesthetics in religious learning and the intersections of power, privilege, and culture in practical theology. She won STH’s Teaching Excellence Award and is the author of The Grace of Playing: Pedagogies for Leaning into God’s New Creation (Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2016). She is also codirector of BU’s Center for Practical Theology.

Promoted to professor:

Betty Anderson, CAS professor of history

Anderson specializes in Middle Eastern history, with an emphasis on social change throughout the region, from the Ottoman Empire to the Arab Spring, incorporating history, politics, economics, education, and culture. She is director of the Pardee School’s Institute for the Study of Muslim Societies & Civilizations and has received Fulbright and American Center of Oriental Research grants. Anderson is the author of four books, most recently A History of the Modern Middle East: Rulers, Rebels, and Rogues (Stanford University Press, 2016).

Promoted to associate professor, non-tenure-track:

Christopher Walsh (GRS’95,’00), CAS associate professor of English

A specialist in American literature, history, and culture, Walsh is interim director of the CAS Writing Program. His book Cowardice: A Brief History (Princeton University Press, 2014) won the Independent Publisher Book Awards bronze medal in world history in 2014.

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