Cal Poly Names Susan Currier Visiting Professor for Teaching Excellence

Cal Poly has selected Jody Lisberger from the University of Rhode Island (URI) as the 2013 Susan Currier Visiting Professorship for Teaching Excellence.

The Susan Currier Visiting Professorship for Teaching Excellence, housed this year in the university’s Women’s and Gender Studies Department, brings to Cal Poly a faculty member with a distinguished record of teaching excellence in a field related to one of 10 departments in the College of Liberal Arts. The professorship, begun in 2009, entails teaching two courses, giving the annual Susan Currier Memorial Lecture, and other activities promoting excellence in teaching. 

Susan Currier Visiting Professor for Teaching Excellence

Lisberger, an associate professor and director of the Gender and Women’s Studies Program at the Rhode Island campus, will teach part-time for two quarters. “I am honored to receive this fellowship,” she said. “It is one that firmly supports my teaching pedagogy, gender and women’s studies and creative writing — all for the benefit of students. I try to move the bar higher, aiming for students to achieve the maximum of their potential. My hope is to offer encouragement, insight, skills and incentives for excellence.”

Lisberger will teach Special Topics in Women’s and Gender Studies — Crossing Borders: Women Writing Their Lives, in which students read memoirs by prominent women from around the world and use the texts to develop the advanced skills necessary to write their own essays.

She will also teach Contemporary Issues in Women’s and Gender Studies, intended to give students a greater understanding of gender issues and human rights concerns around the world and deepen their knowledge about immigration in relation to gender.

Lisberger has been a faculty member at URI since 2004. She focuses her academic pursuits on both fiction and non-fiction writing, including short stories and essays with topics that include pharmaceutical marketing and gender issues in the workplace.

“Remember Love,” Lisberger’s collection of fiction short stories, received nominations for a National Book Award and the Hemingway Foundation and Winship/PEN New England Awards in 2008.

She is the recipient of the 2011 URI Faculty Excellence Award in Diversity Leadership and Service, 2009 URI Lecturer Excellence in Teaching Award, and 2007-08 URI Uhuru Sasa Certificate for Teaching Excellence.

Lisberger earned her doctorate in English from Boston University, a master of fine arts in writing from Vermont College, and a master’s in English with distinction from Boston College.

About the Susan Currier Visiting Professorship

The Susan Currier Visiting Professorship for Teaching Excellence honors and sustains the commitment to education of the late Susan Currier, who served as associate dean of Cal Poly’s College of Liberal Arts and professor of English. The Currier professorship is housed in one of 10 specific departments within the College of Liberal Arts, depending on the background of the selectee. The professorship is made possible through contributions by the Currier family and private donors. 

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