New Duties or Titles for Six Women Scholars in Higher Education

Sonya Alemán, an associate professor of Mexican American studies in the department of race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality studies at the University of Texas at San Antonio, has been selected as the new director for the College of Education’s Women’s Studies Institute.

Dr. Alemán is a graduate of St. Mary’s University in San Antonio. She holds a master’s degree in journalism from the Univerity of Texas at Austin and a Ph.D. in communication from the University of Utah.

Jennifer Swann, professor of biological sciences at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, has been named an ombudsperson at the university. Dr. Swann has been on the faculty at the university for more than a quarter century after teaching a Rutgers University in New Jersey.

Dr. Swann is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University, where she majored in psychology. She holds a master’s degree in physiological psychology and psychobiology from Florida State University and a Ph.D. in reproductive neurobiology from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in negotiation and conflict resolution from Columbia University.

Asli Aslan, an associate professor in the College of Public Health at Georgia Southern University, has been named director of the university’s new Institute for Water and Health. Dr. Asian joined the university’s faculty in 2013 after teaching at Michigan State University.

Dr. Asian holds a bachelor’s degree in biology, a master’s degree in water management, and a Ph.D. in water quality and aquatic microbial ecology, all from the University of Istanbul in Turkey.

Ruth Opara is a new assistant professor of art and music history at Syracuse University in New York. She was a Mellon postdoctoral teaching fellow in the department of music at Columbia University.

Dr. Opara holds a bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. She earned a master’s degree in pan-African studies from the University of Louisville and a Ph.D. in musicology from the University of Colorado Boulder.

Michelle Miley, director of the Montana State University Writing Center and associate professor in the department of English, has been selected as the new associate dean for faculty and college affairs in the College of Letters and Science. She has taught at Montana State University since 2013.

Dr. Miley holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She earned a Ph.D. in rhetoric and composition at the University of Houston.

Renée Lynn Beard was promoted to full professor of sociology at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts. Her research focuses on medical sociology, social gerontology, illness narratives, Alzheimer’s disease, and social movements. She has been a member of the Holy Cross faculty since 2008.

Professor Beard earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Boston College and a Ph.D. in medical sociology from the University of California, San Francisco.

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