Colgate welcomes new faculty members

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This fall, Colgate welcomed 43 new professors in more than 25 different departments, athletics, and the university libraries. Colgate’s newest educators represent a mix of Colgate alumni, visiting professors from across the country, and new assistant professors with a wide range of research interests.

For more information, read the full list of new faculty biographies below.

Megan Brankley Abbas, Assistant Professor of Religion
BA Williams College; MA, PhD Princeton University

Megan Brankley Abbas comes to Colgate from the State University of New York at Geneseo, where she served as an assistant professor in Islamic world history. Her dissertation title is “Knowing Islam: The Entangled History of Western Academia and Modern Islamic Thought.” Abbas’s teaching specialties include Islamic studies and methods in the study of religion. Her research interests include modern Islamic thought and Islam in Indonesia.

Ynesse Abdul-Malak, Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology and Anthropology
AAS Regents College; BS, MPH American University of Beirut; MA, PhD Syracuse University

Ynesse Abdul-Malak comes to Colgate from Syracuse University, where she served as a post-doctoral research fellow. Her dissertation title is “Healthy Immigrants? Exploring Country of Origin, Pre-Immigration Experiences, and Acculturation in Relationship to the U.S. Immigrants’ Health.” Her research interests include issues related to racial and gender inequality, health disparity, and disability studies. She enjoys teaching courses on race, aging, gender, immigration, medical sociology, and research methodology.

Nicholas Albertson, Assistant Professor of East Asian Languages and Literatures
AB Brown University; MA, PhD University of Chicago

Nicholas Albertson was hired into the tenure stream after serving as lecturer in university studies and Japanese in 2017–18. Before Colgate, Albertson served as an assistant professor of Japanese at Wake Forest University. His scholarly work focuses on modern Japanese poetry.

Adam Allan, Visiting Assistant Professor of Mathematics
BSc Clarkson University; MSc, PhD University of Chicago

Adam Allan comes to Colgate from Central Connecticut State University, where he serves as assistant professor. His thesis title is “Modular Centralizer Algebras.”

Joonbum Bae, Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science
BA, MA Seoul National University; PhD University of California, Los Angeles

Joonbum Bae comes to Colgate from Hobart and William Smith College, having served as visiting assistant professor. Joonbum’s dissertation title is “Authoritarian Regimes, Domestic Stability, and International Conflict.” His research interests include international security, authoritarian stability, international relations theory, East Asia, and the Koreas.

Kyle Bass, Gretchen Hoadley Burke ’81 Endowed Chair in Regional Studies in the Theater Department (Spring 2019)
BA State University of New York at Fredonia; MFA The American University; MFA Goddard College

Kyle Bass comes to Colgate from the Syracuse Stage, where he serves as the associate artistic director. He is also an adjunct faculty member and member of the Faculty Advisory Board of the Humanities Center at Syracuse University.

Nardos Beyene, Visiting Instructor of Economics
BA, MA Addis Ababa University; MA, PhD candidate Western Michigan University

Nardos Beyene comes to Colgate from Western Michigan University. Beyene’s dissertation title is “The Inter-Market Transmission of Liquidity Shocks and Asset Pricing Models.” His teaching specialties include monetary economics, financial economics, econometrics, and labor economics. Beyene’s research interests include contagion liquidity shocks, asset pricing models, monetary policy analysis, and forecasting using mixed frequency models.

Timothee Bryan, Visiting Assistant Professor of Mathematics
BS University of Sioux Falls; MS, PhD North Carolina State University

Timothee Bryan comes to Colgate from the University of Sioux Falls, where he serves as assistant professor. His dissertation title is “Hall-Littlewood Vertex Operators and the Kostka-Foulkes Polynomials.” His teaching specialties include algebra and combinatorics, while his research interests include using combinatorics to derive algebraic formulae and generating functions for symmetric polynomials.

Ryan Chase, Assistant Professor of Music
BM Mannes College of Music; MM, DM Indiana University Jacobs School of Music

Ryan Chase was hired into the tenure stream after serving as visiting assistant professor since 2016. His dissertation title is “Ghost of the Machine” for sinfonietta. His teaching specialties include composition, electronic music/audio engineering, and music theory. Chase’s research interests center on acoustics, spectralism, musical borrowing/sampling, post-WWII tonal harmony, and meter and rhythm as formal devices in the music of Brahms.

Julian Cresser, Visiting Assistant Professor of Africana and Latin American Studies
BA, PhD University of the West Indies–Mona

Julian Cresser comes to Colgate from the University of the West Indies, where he served as lecturer in the Department of History and Archaeology. His dissertation title is “Genesis of a Jamaican Team: Cultural Identity and Integration in Jamaican Cricket, 1880–1918.” Cresser’s teaching specialties include Caribbean history, sports history, and sociology and heritage management. His research interests include Caribbean sport and identity, sport and globalization, and Jamaican social and cultural history.

Philippe Duhart, Visiting Assistant Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies
AA Bakersfield College; BA California State University; MA, PhD University of California

Philippe Duhart comes to Colgate after serving as a visiting assistant professor at Loyola Marymount University and instructor at California State University. His dissertation title is “Between Ballots and Bullets: Disengagement from Violent Conflict in Northern Ireland and the Basque Country.” His teaching specialties include theory of peace and conflict, terrorism and counterterrorism, sociology of war, and sociological theory. His research interests include militarism, and conflict and crime.

Lauren Ellis, Instructor in Physical Education and Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach
BA Bloomsburg University; MA Salisbury University

Lauren Ellis has been with the Colgate women’s basketball team since August 2016, when she was hired as the director of basketball operations. Before coming to Colgate, Ellis served as an assistant coach at both Widener University and Salisbury University. She played collegiate basketball for Bloomsburg University from 2009 to 2013.

Amany El Saeid, Visiting Lecturer of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies
BA, MA Cairo University; MA American University in Cairo; PhD candidate Ain-Shams University

Amany Mohamed El Saeid Ahmed comes to Colgate from the American University in Cairo, where she serves as an instructor in the Career Certificate in Teaching Arabic as a Foreign Language Program. Ahmed’s dissertation title is “Verbs of Directions in the Holy Qur’an: A Semantic and Analytical Study.” She also holds a diploma in educational leadership and management from Notting Hill College and Eton University.

Md. Didarul Hasan, Visiting Assistant Professor of Economics
BSS, MSS University of Chittagong; MS Australian National University; PhD Southern Illinois University

Md. Didarul Hasan comes to Colgate from the Asian University for Women, where he serves as an assistant professor of economics. Hasan’s dissertation title is “Natural Resources, Conflicts, and Conflict Management.” His teaching interests include microeconomics, development economics, international economics, managerial economics, industrial organization, mathematical economics, and econometrics. Hasan’s research interests include international economics, development economics, economics of conflict, and natural resource economics.

Brynn Hatton, Visiting Assistant Professor of Art & Art History
BA University of California–Berkeley; MA, PhD Northwestern University

Brynn Hatton comes to Colgate from Williams College, where she has served as a visiting assistant professor. Her dissertation title is “Via Vietnam: Racial Coalition and Social Collapse in Transnational Protest Art, 1965–1975.” Her major research interests include art and visual culture of the 20th and 21st centuries; transnational art and activism during and after the Cold War; contemporary artistic strategies of dissent; protest art; countercultures of the Vietnam-American War; social movement mobilization theory; and critical race theory.

Masha Hedberg, Assistant Professor of Political Science
BA Yale University; PhD Harvard University

Masha Hedberg comes to Colgate from the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, where she served as the James Anderson Adjunct Professor at SAIS Europe. Hedberg’s research and teaching specialties include comparative politics, Russia, the former Soviet Union, Eastern and Central Europe; political economy; business-state relations in hybrid regimes; Russian foreign policy; energy relations in the former Soviet Bloc; political corruption; as well as markets and institutions in developing economies.

Joshua Ison, Instructor in Physical Education and Assistant Football Coach
BS Fairmont State University; MS West Virginia University

Josh Ison comes to Colgate from Tiffin University, where he served as an assistant head coach, special teams coordinator, and linebacker and strength and conditioning coach. While a student, he was the first author on an abstract published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise.

Katie Kammerdiener, Director of Recreation and Physical Education
BA Colgate University; MA University of Florida

Katie Kammerdiener was promoted to director in July 2018 after serving as assistant director of recreation and physical education since 2016. Kammerdiener also served as interim director of the Center for Leadership and Student Involvement. Kammerdiener played collegiate basketball for Colgate while earning her degree in geology and minoring in religion.

Matthew Karweck, Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach
University of Notre Dame; MS Indiana University

Matt Karweck comes to Colgate from the University of Notre Dame, where he served six seasons as an assistant coach. Karweck also played collegiate lacrosse at Notre Dame and competed professionally in England for one season and also served as a men’s lacrosse coach at Sheffield University.

Ndinda Kioko, Olive B. O’Connor Creative Writing Fellow in the Department of English
BA Kenyatta University; MFA University of Oregon

Ndinda Kioko comes to Colgate from the University of Oregon, where she was serving as a graduate teaching fellow. Her teaching specialties include creative writing and college composition.

Alison Koleszar, Visiting Assistant Professor of Geology
BA Colgate University; ScM Brown University; PhD Oregon State University

Alison Koleszar served as a lecturer and research associate in geology at Colgate in 2017–18. Prior to that, she was a research scientist associate and instructor at the University of Texas at Austin. Her dissertation title is “Controls on Eruption Style and Magma Compositions at Mount Hood, Oregon.”

Benjamin Lennertz, Assistant Professor of Philosophy
BA Vassar College; PhD University of Southern California

Ben Lennertz comes to Colgate from Western Kentucky University, where he served as assistant professor in the department of philosophy and religion. Lennertz also served as visiting assistant professor of philosophy at Colgate in 2015–16. His dissertation title is “Reasoning with Uncertainty and Epistemic Modals.” His teaching specialties include philosophy of language, epistemology, and philosophy of mind. His research interests include uncertainty from perspectives of formal epistemology, philosophy of mind, and philosophy of language.

Konstantin Magin, Visiting Assistant Professor of Economics
BA Leningrad Institute of Economics and Finance; PhD University of California–Berkeley

Konstantin Magin comes to Colgate from the Center for Risk Management Research at the University of California–Berkeley, where he serves as a researcher with principal investigator status. Magin’s dissertation title is “Russian Privatization 1992–2002.” His teaching specialties and research interests include financial economics and macroeconomics.

Adaickapillai Mahendran, Visiting Assistant Professor of Chemistry
BSc University of Peradeniya; MPhil, PhD Graduate Center & Brooklyn College, City University of New York

Adaickapillai Mahendran comes to Colgate from Columbia University, where he has served as a teaching assistant and postdoctoral research fellow. Mahendran’s teaching interests include general chemistry, organic chemistry, introductory medicinal chemistry, introductory biochemistry, and introductory mass spectrometry.

Nicki Moore, Vice President and Director of Athletics
BS Ed, MA, PhD University of Missouri

Nicki Moore comes to Colgate from the University of North Carolina, where she served as a senior associate athletic director and senior woman administrator. Her dissertation title was “Operationalizing Ernest Boyer’s Six Principles of a Vital Learning Community.” As a collegiate athlete, Moore was an Academic All-American, a three-time conference champion, qualified for the NCAA Championships twice, and earned silver medals at the USA Outdoor Junior Nationals and the Junior Pan Am Games.

Eric Muller, Assistant Professor of Chemistry
BA Haverford College; PhD University of California–Berkeley

Eric Muller comes to Colgate from the University of Colorado–Boulder, where he served as a postdoctoral fellow. His thesis title is “Electron Dynamics and Symmetries at the Metal-Molecule Interface Probed by Two-Photon Photoemission.” Muller’s teaching interests include general chemistry, physical chemistry, quantum mechanics, statistical thermodynamics, kinetics, materials chemistry, surface chemistry, biochemistry, biophysical chemistry, spectroscopy, and linear and non-linear optics.

Siona O’Connell, Colgate NEH Professor of the Humanities in the Africana and Latin American Studies Program, Department of Art & Art History and the Film and Media Studies Program
BFA, MA, PhD University of Cape Town

Siona O’Connell comes to Colgate from the University of Pretoria, where she serves as academic head in museum and heritage studies. O’Connell has directed and produced several film documentaries that resulted from her research projects on identity, memory, and belonging in post-apartheid South Africa. Her research interests include visual studies, memory, and restorative justice in postcolonial and post-apartheid South Africa.

Javier Padilla, Assistant Professor of English
BA Colgate University; MA, PhD Princeton University

Javier Padilla returns to his alma mater after receiving his PhD. His dissertation title is “Modernist Poetry and the Poetics of Temporality: Between Modernity and Coloniality.” His teaching specialties include global modernism, Irish and Latin American Studies, translation studies, and 20th-century poetry. Padilla’s research interests include postcolonialism and modernism/modernity.

Anne Perring, Assistant Professor of Chemistry
ScB Brown University; PhD University of California–Berkeley

Anne Perring comes to Colgate from CIRES/NOAA in Boulder, Colo., where she served as research scientist II. Her dissertation title is “The Atmospheric Chemistry of Isoprene- and Other Multifunctional-Nitrates.” Perring’s teaching specialty is analytical chemistry, while her research interests include air quality, climate, as well as atmospheric aerosols and gases.

Lauren Philbrook, Assistant Professor of Psychology
BA Williams College; MS, PhD The Pennsylvania State University

Lauren Philbrook comes to Colgate from Williams College, where she served as visiting assistant professor in the psychology department. Her dissertation title is “Longitudinal Associations Between Parenting and Infant Regulation.” Philbrook’s teaching specialties include child development and sleep across the lifespan. Her research interests include familial, socioeconomic, and sociocultural influences on the development of sleep and physiological regulation in children as well as how sleep and physiological regulation predict mental and physical health and academic outcomes.

Angela Rudert, Visiting Assistant Professor of Hinduism and Asian Religions
BA Davidson College; MA Cornell University; MPhil, PhD Syracuse University

Angela Rudert comes to Colgate from Ithaca College, where she has served for several years as lecturer in the Department of Philosophy and Religion. Rudert’s teaching specialties include the religious traditions of India as well as gender and religion, while her research interests include Hinduism and Sikhism, in India and in diaspora, and women’s religious authority.

Roberto Salgado, Visiting Assistant Professor of Physics
BS SUNY Stony Brook; MS University of Chicago; PhD Syracuse University

Roberto Salgado comes to Colgate from University of Wisconsin–LaCrosse, where he served as lecturer of physics. Salgado’s dissertation title is “Toward a Quantum Dynamics for Casual Sets.” His research interests include theoretical relativity, applied mathematics, physics pedagogy, computational physics, and scientific visualization.

Hiva Samadian, Visiting Assistant Professor of Computer Science
BS Amir Kabir University; MSc Tarbiat Modares University; PhD University of Puerto Rico

Hiva Samadian has taught at the Ohio State University, the University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez, and Amir Kabir University. Samadian’s areas of specialty include bioinformatics and computational biology, gene expression data analysis, data mining, computability and complexity theory, mathematical logic, graph theory, artificial intelligence, robot motion planning, and user privacy and access control.

Brenda Sanya, Assistant Professor of Educational Studies
BA Gordon College; MA Simmons College; PhD University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Brenda Sanya was hired into the tenure stream after serving as a visiting assistant professor of educational studies in 2017–18. Before Colgate, Sanya completed her PhD studies in global studies in education with a minor in Queer studies. Her dissertation title is “States of Discretion: Black Migrating Bodies and Citizenship in the United States.”

Juliana Smith, Senior Associate Athletics Director/Chief of Staff
BS, MS University of Mississippi; MEd University of Oklahoma

Juliana Smith comes to Colgate from the University of Oklahoma. She has also served at Texas Tech University and the University of Mississippi.

Emily Strasser, Olive B. O’Connor Creative Writing Fellow in the Department of English
BA Vassar College; MFA University of Minnesota

Emily Strasser comes to Colgate from Minneapolis, Minn., where she has taught creative writing at the University of Minnesota and the Loft Literary Center. Her teaching specialties include creative nonfiction, memoir, personal essay, and researched nonfiction. Her research interests include the first-person voice in nonfiction, personal and institutional memory, nuclear history and culture, and secrecy. She is working on a book exploring the intersection of family and national secrets through her grandfather’s work as a nuclear scientist in Oak Ridge, Tenn.

Kelley Tatangelo, Visiting Assistant Professor of Mathematics
BS Northeastern University; MS, PhD Tulane University
Kelley Tatangelo comes to Colgate from the Colorado School of Mines, where she has served as a postdoctoral teaching Fellow. Tatangelo’s dissertation title is “Multiplicativity of the Euler Characteristic.” Her teaching specialties and research interests include calculus, linear and abstract algebra, and topology.

Daniel Tober, Assistant Professor in the Classics
BA Brown University; MPhil Corpus Christi College, Oxford University; AM Harvard University; PhD Princeton University

Daniel Tober comes to Colgate from Fordham University, where he served as a lecturer in the classics department. His dissertation title is “The Autobiographical Polis: Local Historiography in Classical and Hellenistic Greece.” Tober’s teaching specialties include Greek and Roman history (in particular Hellenistic history) and Greek and Roman historiography. His research interests include Greek local historiography, Hellenistic Athens, and community and memory in the ancient world.

Semiha Topal, Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion and Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies (Fall 2018)
BA Fatih University; MA University of London; PhD Arizona State University

Semiha Topal was most recently an assistant professor of sociology at Fatih University in Istanbul, Turkey. Her dissertation title is “Building a Pious Self in Secular Settings: Pious Women in Modern Turkey.” Topal’s teaching specialties include Islam and the Middle East, anthropology of Islam, women and Islam, religion and secularism, as well as religion and human rights. Her research interests include subjectivity and self-construction, women’s piety and secularism, religion and secular ethics, and gender and subjectivity in Islam.

Michael Wilson-Becerril, Visiting Instructor of Peace and Conflict Studies
BA University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point; MA and PhD University of California–Santa Cruz

Mike Wilson-Becerril comes to Colgate from the University of California–Santa Cruz, where he served as instructor, research mentor, and teaching assistant. His dissertation title is “Gold Mining in Peru: Company Strategies, Everyday Violence, and the Politics of Attention.” Wilson-Becerril’s teaching specialties include Latin American politics, political ecology, and violence and resistance. His research interests include extractive industries, natural resources, and development; peace and conflict studies; comparative politics of Latin America; and political ethnography.

Qing Ye, Visiting Assistant Professor of Chinese
BA Beijing Normal University; MA McGill University; PhD University of Oregon

Qing Ye comes to Colgate from the University of Houston, having served as lecturer in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages. Qing’s dissertation title is “Reading Bodies: Aesthetics, Gender, and Family in the Eighteenth-Century Chinese Novel Guwangyan (Preposterous Words).”

Courtney Young, University Librarian and Professor in the University Libraries
BA College of Wooster; MS Simmons College

Courtney Young came to Colgate from Penn State University’s Greater Allegheny campus, where she was the head librarian and professor of women’s studies. She served as president of the American Library Association from 2014 to 2015.

Daniel Zaleski, Visiting Assistant Professor of Chemistry
BS Syracuse University; PhD University of Virginia

Daniel Zaleski comes to Colgate after serving as a postdoctoral fellow at the Argonne National Lab. Zaleski’s dissertation title is “Exploring Interstellar Chemistry with Broadband Reaction Screening.” His teaching specialty is physical chemistry, while his research interests include spectroscopy and artificial intelligence.