Dean of the Faculty

Information for New Faculty, 2015-2016

New Tenure-Track Faculty

Meet our newest tenure-track faculty (top row, left to right): Adi GordonRafeeq HasanMary HicksDeborah Holoien and Jeeyon Jeong, and Andreas Zanker; (2nd row, left to right): Pooja Rangan, Collin RaymondYael RiceRaphael Sigal, Crystal Valentine. For more information on all new faculty members, click here.





Because they will provide information and perspectives to help you in your work as teachers, scholars, and members of the Amherst community, we expect that new members of the faculty will attend each of these events. If for any reason you must miss one, please contact Austin Sarat.

 Dinosaur aeriel viewDinosaurs and friends

Wednesday, September 2, 4:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. 
Dean’s Welcome Barbecue with Dinosaurs and Friends
Amherst College Beneski Museum of Natural History

All new faculty members and their families, as well as their department chairs, are invited to a barbecue and introduction to the Beneski Museum of Natural History (which dinosaur lovers young and old particularly enjoy). Information will be provided about teaching using the museum’s collections.

Thursday, September 3, Noon-1:30 p.m. 
Luncheon Discussion for New Faculty: Meeting Members of the Community

Amherst College Alumni House

This event offers an opportunity to learn about the early weeks of the semester, to discuss registration practices, to ask questions, and to meet the librarian of the college; the directors of the Mead Art Museum, Athletics, Human Resources, Information Technology, and the Center for Community Engagement; the registrar; and deans from the Office of Student Affairs and the Office of the Dean of the Faculty; and other administrators.

Monday, September 7, 5:00 p.m.-5:45 p.m.Convocation
First Faculty Meeting

Cole Assembly Room, Converse Hall

Preceding convocation, there will be a short faculty meeting to introduce new and returning colleagues and approve some new courses. After the meeting, everyone is invited to a light supper in Converse lobby until 7:00 p.m., allowing time to put on regalia for convocation.

Monday, September 7, 7:30 p.m.
Johnson Chapel

Please plan to attend convocation. Faculty and administrators who participate wear academic regalia. If you need to rent regalia, early notice is essential. Please contact Paula Mieczkowski for rental information. Paula can also help with purchasing regalia at any time during the year. Please place your order as soon as possible, and definitely by early July, to avoid high shipping fees.

Friday, September 11, Noon-1:30 p.m.
Title IX Training for New Faculty with Laurie Frankl

Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

Amherst's Title IX coordinator will provide an overview of Title IX, covering topics that include the college's response to reports of sexual misconduct; faculty members' role as mandated reporters of information related to sexual misconduct; resources available to students; and strategies for managing difficult conversations.

Monday, September 21, 5:00p.m.-6:15 p.m.
Library Reception for New Faculty
Periodicals Reading Room, Frost Library

Friday, October 2, Noon-1:30 p.m.
Lunch Discussion for New Faculty: Student Rights/Student Problems—Faculty Responsibilities

Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

Colleges are now facing the convergence of a generation of students who arrive on campus with serious problems and, at the same time, a more rigorous legal and regulatory climate. Areas of prime concern include disabilities (ADA), privacy (FERPA), and reporting of infractions (Clery Act). We, as teachers, may wonder how our role with students is changing and how the college is working to assure the rights and intellectual freedom of all parties. As informants we have invited Suzanne Coffey, chief student affairs officer; Alex Vasquez, dean of students; Jodi Foley, accessibility services manager; and Lisa Rutherford, chief policy officer and general counsel.  

RSVP here

Friday, October 23, Noon-1:30 p.m.
For Visiting Faculty Members: How to Get the Most Out of Your Time at Amherst (for visiting faculty members only)

Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

Being a visiting faculty member at Amherst can be a very rewarding and exciting experience. In this session, colleagues who have been/are visiting faculty members will reflect on their experiences as visitors. What worked for them in helping to get the most out of being at Amherst? What pitfalls can be anticipated and avoided?

Friday, November 6, Noon-1:30 p.m. 
Lunch Discussion for New Faculty: Let's Talk Athletics

Friends Room, Alumni Gym

An opportunity to meet Director of Athletics Don Faulstick and coaches to discuss the role of athletics at the college.

Thursday, December 17, Noon-1:30 p.m.
Lunch Discussion for New Faculty: Faculty Governance

Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

Amherst prides itself on its tradition of faculty governance. This conversation will focus on the roles that faculty members play in setting policy and making decisions at the college. We will discuss the faculty meeting and its norms, as well as the roles and responsibilities of two major college committees—the Committee of Six (the executive committee of the faculty) and the Committee on Educational Policy (CEP).

Tuesday, January 19 (tentative), 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Workshop on Teaching, Career, and Life

Location TBA

At the earliest stage of their careers at the college, untenured faculty members meet with newer and veteran faculty to discuss issues of mutual concern, including teaching, evaluation, how things work at Amherst, and work/life balance, at this half-day workshop. The Office of the Dean of Faculty and the Grants Office sponsor the workshop. It is hoped that faculty members will participate in this workshop one time during their early years at the college. 

Friday, January 29, Noon-1:30 p.m.
Book Discussion: The Black Academic's Guide to Winning Tenure—without Losing Your Soul, by Kerry Ann Rockquemore and Tracey Laszloffy
Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

The book will be provided.

Friday, February 12, Noon-1:30 p.m.   
Reading/Interpreting Teaching Evaluations

Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall  

This conversation, which will take place after new faculty receive their first Amherst teaching evaluations, will focus on how to interpret the evaluations and, for those on the tenure track, how they are used in the reappointment and tenure processes. Senior faculty will offer their perspectives. 

Friday, March 4, Noon-1:30 p.m.
Imagining Pedagogical Possibilities

Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall                     

A discussion of pedagogical possibilities ranging from active learning approaches, community-based teaching, and strategies to foster effective student research. We will be joined by the director of Amherst's Center for Community Engagement, Sarah Barr; the college's instructional designer/technologist, hari stephen kumar; and the library's head of research and instruction, Missy Roser.

Friday, April 15, Noon-1:30 p.m. 
Well-Being and Student Learning: Jackie Alvarez
Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

Associate Dean of Students Jackie Alvarez, director of Amherst's counseling center, will discuss the ways in which students' well-being may affect their ability to learn. She will offer advice to faculty about how they can help students deal with stress and other factors that can have an impact on student learning.

Monday, May 9, Noon-1:30 p.m.
Lunch Discussion for New Faculty: Reflections and Plans Going Forward
Mullins-Faerber Rooms, Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Dining Hall

New faculty will offer their impressions of their first year at Amherst and discuss their experiences, while also looking ahead to the future.