Faculty

The Honors College has talented professors who love to inspire students. Outstanding teachers, prominent researchers, authors and scholars offer insights in their fields of study. Honors faculty represent a range of academic disciplines and are among the most innovative at Towson University.

In the Classroom

Honors classroom

 Each semester Honors College students have the opportunity to take over 40 Honors courses with excited and inventive Towson faculty members. With course enrollments limited to 20 students and a focus on the seminar-style discussion format, students have the opportunity to build connections with faculty from day one on campus. The Honors College believes that the undergraduate experience is enhanced by a collaborative learning philosophy which encourages students and faculty to work side-by-side in the classroom.

Honors College seminars are proposed by faculty members with the specific intention of enabling students and faculty to examine areas that are not usually part of regular departmental offerings. Honors seminars provide a robust and collegial discussion environment that is intellectually demanding, and encourage undergraduate research, interdisciplinary perspectives, critical thinking, and global awareness. Honors seminars often deal with topics that are at the forefront of a faculty member's academic inquiry, and which have direct relevance to world in which we live.

Faculty-Led Research

Honors student conducting a scientific experiment with a faculty member assisting by showing her information in a book

 Honors students work one-on-one with TU faculty in the pursuit of Honors electives like internships, independent studies, and thesis writing. Faculty supervision allows Honors students the opportunity to gain valuable experience engaging in work which will prepare them for graduate study or the working world. 

Some recent examples of Honors students gaining recognition for their elective research include:

  • Two Honors senior chemistry majors examining an organic chemical compound with medical possibilities for their Honors theses with Dr. Keith Reber: Antiviral mold research grows into endowed chair honor
  • An Honors junior's independent study on NFL marketing to female audiences led to a conference presentation in Wisconsin: Women are key to NFL's future growth
  • An Honors junior, Nick McKinley, co-designed an Honors course on literature with Dr. Cynthia Ghent of the Department of Biological Sciences, HONR370: Dystopia through the Lens of Fiction, offered for the first time in the fall 2016 semester

In the Admissions Process

Honors College faculty who spend their time teaching Honors students are the best equipped to assess a prospective student's readiness for success in the Honors classroom. Each year approximately 50 TU faculty assist in the Honors College application review process by reading incoming freshman and transfer student applications. This effort allows the Honors College to take a holistic approach to assessing applications and ensure that all applicant-submitted material is considered by one or more reviewers.

Honors College Professor of the Year

Each year, all graduating Honors students are invited to nominate a faculty member for Honors College Professor of the Year.

This year the Class of 2016 selected Dr. Michael Elliott as the Professor of the Year.

Michael Elliott

Dr. Michael Elliott (Ph.D., Emory University) is Associate Professor of Sociology at Towson University. He teaches Sociological Theory, Political Sociology, and Introduction to Sociology. In the Honors College, Dr. Elliott teaches a freshman seminar on water, an advanced seminar on globalization, and Honors Introduction to Sociology. His research focuses on issues related to globalization and world history, including recent publications on the institutional expansion  of human rights, world heritage, and modern beer brewing. Dr. Elliott is currently designing a study about the religious dimensions of pop culture fan communities, where he hopes to recruit the help of Honors College students and their many talents.

Past Honors College Professors of the Year:

Our Honors Faculty

Fall 2016

Spring 2016

  • Dr. Peter Baker (HONR 230*: Ginsberg and Burroughs)
  • Dr. Barbara Bass (ENGL 190: Honors Writing Seminar)
  • Dr. Sharon Becker (ENGL 290*: Culture, Alienation, Boredom, and Despair)
  • Dr. Amy Bennett (PSYC 102: Honors Introduction to Psychology)
  • Dr. Gail Brickman (MATH 293: Honors Seminar in Mathematics)
  • Dr. Alan Britt (HONR 230*: Ginsberg and Burroughs)
  • Dr. Lillian Carter (HONR 370*: Becoming Sexually Healthy)
  • Dr. Thomas Ciufo (HONR 370*: Acoustic Ecology and Sound Art)
  • Dr. Matthew Durington (ANTH 210: Honors Cultural Anthropology)
  • Dr. Colleen Ebacher (HONR 370*: Migration of Hispanics in the US)
  • Dr. Michael Elliott (SOCI 102: Honors Introduction to Sociology)
  • Dr. Christos Evangeliou (HONR 235*: Legacy of Socrates)
  • Dr. Erin Fehskens (HONR 370*: Literature of Ethics, Violence, and Reconciliation)
  • Prof. Ronald Fenicle (DFST 114: Honors American Sign Language I)
  • Prof. Donna Fox (THEA 102: Honors Acting I)
  • Dr. Jack Fruchtman (POSC 212*: Honors in Political Science)
  • Dr. Seth Gitter (HONR 370*: Economic Issues in Latin America)
  • Dr. Gary Homana (EDUC 204: Honors Teaching and Learning in a Diverse Society)
  • Dr. Michael Korzi (POSC 102: Honors Introduction to Political Science)
  • Dr. Jeffrey Kukucka (HONR 370*: Psychology, Law & Social Justice)
  • Dr. Cristina Magaldi (HONR 230*: Popular Music: US in the 1970s)
  • Dr. Makmiller Pedroso (PHIL 212*: The Philosophy of Biology)
  • Dr. Carol Pippen (ENGL 290*: Austen and the Brontës)
  • Prof. Andrew Reiner (ENGL 190: Honors Writing Seminar, ENGL 290*: Memoir as Self Discovery, HONR 370*: Changing Face of Masculinity)
  • Dr. Akim Reinhardt (HIST 162: Honors American Indian History)
  • Dr. Thomas Rhoads (ECON 204: Honors Macroeconomic Principles)
  • Dr. Erik Scully (BIOL 117: Honors Biology: The Science of Life, HONR 227*: Evolutionary Perspectives in Biology)
  • Dr. Jessica Shiller (HONR 229*: Reforming Urban Schools)
  • Dr. Jonathan Vincent (ENGL 290*: American Literature in the Atomic Age: 1945-89)
  • Prof. Benjamin Warner (ENGL 332: Honors Writing Fiction, HONR 225*: Writing for the Environment)
  • Dr. Niya Werts (HONR 240*: International Food and Culture)
  • Dr. Bethany Willis Hepp (FMST 102: Honors Introduction to Family Studies)
  • Dr. David Zang (HONR 370*: American Sports in the Vietnam Era)

Fall 2015

  • Dr. Howard Baetjer (ECON 203: Honors Microeconomic Principles)
  • Dr. Peter Baker (CLST 202: Honors Introduction to Cultural Studies, HONR 370*: Idea of the University)
  • Dr. Barbara Bass (ENGL 190: Honors Writing Seminar)
  • Dr. Sharon Becker (ENGL 290*: Culture, Alienation, Boredom, and Despair)
  • Dr. Amy Bennett (PSYC 102: Honors Introduction to Psychology)
  • Dr. Bethany Brand (HONR 370*: The Impact of Trauma on Individuals and Society)
  • Dr. Gail Brickman (MATH 283: Honors Calculus I)
  • Dr. Carol Caronna (SOCI 102: Honors Introduction to Sociology)
  • Dr. Lillian Carter (HONR 370*: Becoming Sexually Healthy)
  • Dr. Isabel Castro-Vázquez (SPAN 203: Honors Spanish: Intermediate I)
  • Dr. Erin Fehskens (HONR 243*: Global Literature)
  • Prof. Donna Fox (THEA 102: Honors Acting I)
  • Dr. Jack Fruchtman (POSC 212*: Politics and the Supreme Court)
  • Dr. Beth Haller (MCOM 102: Honors Introduction to Mass Communication)
  • Dr. Cynthia Kalodner (HONR 370*: Info: Truth and Social Media)
  • Dr. Ryan King-White (KNES 354: Honors Sport and Society)
  • Dr. William Kleinsasser (HONR 370*: Engaging Audio & Video Possibilities)
  • Dr. Irena Makarushka (HONR 370*: The Meaning of Life)
  • Dr. Cristina Magaldi (HONR 243*: Brazil, Music, and Globalization)
  • Prof. James McFalls (MUSC 125: Honors History of Jazz)
  • Dr. Salvatore Pappalardo (ENGL 290*: The Political History of the Novel)
  • Dr. Makmiller Pedroso (PHIL 212*: The Philosophy of Biology)
  • Dr. Carol Pippen (ENGL 290*: Austen and the Brontës)
  • Dr. Carol Quinn (ENGL 290*: Rhetoric and Love)
  • Dr. Sonali Raje (CHEM 115: Honors Chemistry for Allied Health Professions)
  • Prof. Andrew Reiner (ENGL 190: Honors Writing Seminar, HONR 230*: Mr. Rogers 101, HONR370*: Changing Face of Masculinity)
  • Dr. Molly Ruhlman (POSC 108: Honors Introduction to International Relations)
  • Dr. Jessica Shiller (HONR 229*: Reforming Urban Schools)
  • Dr. John Sivey (HONR 227*: The Polluted States of America)
  • Dr. Jonathan Vincent (ENGL 290*: Modernity, Jazz, and the Cuture of the Great War)
  • Prof. Benjamin Warner (HONR 225*: Writing for the Environment)
  • Dr. Niya Werts (HONR 240*: International Food and Culture)

*Denotes a special topics course. Special topics courses such as ENGL 290 or HONR 370 share broad methodological approaches while addressing specific subject matter relevant to the each instructor. In any given semester multiple sections of a special topics course may be offered with a different subject for each section.