Luther College announces grants of tenure and promotions

Luther College President Paula Carlson and Dean of the College Kevin Kraus have announced promotions and grants of tenure for current faculty members.

At its February meeting, the Luther Board of Regents approved tenure for Maryna Bazylevych, sociology/anthropology/social work; Kate Elliott, visual and performing arts; Anne-Marine Feat, modern languages, literatures and linguistics; Holly Moore, philosophy; and Elizabeth Steding, modern languages, literatures and linguistics. Bazylevych, Elliott, Feat and Moore were also promoted to associate professor, as was Scott Hurley, religion.

The Board approved promotion to full professor for Spencer Martin, music; Brad Miller, computer science; David Thompson, modern languages, literatures and linguistics; and Loren Toussaint, psychology.

Maryna Bazylevych

Maryna Bazylevych, sociology/anthropology/social work, has taught at Luther since 2010. She holds a bachelor's degree in English philology and translation from the Technological University of Podillia, Khmelnytsky, Ukraine. Bazylevych earned her master's and doctoral degrees in anthropology from the State University of New York at Albany.

She teaches in both the anthropology department and the women and gender studies program, focusing on the topics of medical anthropology, body and health, and post-socialism.

Bazylevych's recent research focuses on the anthropology of East Europe, most specifically post-socialist and millennial Ukraine. She is the editor of "Anthropology of East Europe Review," and received funding from the H. George and Jutta F. Anderson Faculty Development Fund for her fieldwork research project titled, "Hippocratic into Hypocritical. Reinterpretation of Hippocratic Oath in Ukraine."

Kate Elliott

Kate Elliott has served in the Visual and Performing Arts department since 2010. She holds bachelor's degrees in studio art and art history from St. Olaf College, and earned her master's degree in art history and doctoral degree in American art history from the University of Iowa.

Her teaching philosophy fosters visual literacy and builds critical thinking, while introducing students to the history of art. She seeks to draw connections between the history of art and contemporary media culture, encouraging students to question the "truth" of images.

Elliott's courses range from art foundations to methods, gender in art to ethics in art, and American art to Pleolithic, Gothic and Renaissance art.

Anne-Marine Feat

Anne-Marine Feat began teaching in the modern languages, literatures and linguistics in 2006.

Her courses include Intermediate French, Francophone Literature and Culture, and Introduction to French Culture.

Feat holds a bachelor's degree in Celtic studies and teaching French as a foreign language, and a master's degree in English from the Université de Bretagne Occidentale. She earned a doctoral degree in Irish studies from the Université Michel de Montaigne.

Holly Moore

Holly Moore has been a professor in the philosophy department since 2010. Her coursework focuses on ancient philosophy and 20th century continental philosophy.

Moore is especially interested in the questions of philosophy—whether ethical, metaphysical or aesthetic. Her most recently published work is "Animal Sacrifice in Plato's Later Methodology," which appears as a chapter in Jeremy Bell and Michael Naas' 2015 "Plato's Animals." Moore is also at work on projects for the journals Philosophy and Rhetoric, and Polis: The Journal for Ancient Greek Political Thought, and is writing a book, "Plato's Mimetic Method."

She earned bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in philosophy from Pennsylvania State University, Villanova University and DePaul University, respectively.

Elizabeth Steding

Elizabeth Steding has served in the modern languages, literatures and linguistics department since 2005, regularly teaching language courses, 20th century German Literature and Culture, Making Decisions for U.S. Schools and Advanced Teaching Methods.

Steding holds a bachelor's degree in German from Alma College, a master's degree in German language and culture from the University of California-Santa Barbara, and a doctoral degree in German studies from Michigan State University.

Scott Hurley

Scott Hurley has taught at Luther since 2008. He received his bachelor's degree in Family Studies, and his master's and doctoral degrees in East Asian studies from the University of Arizona.

His research interests focus on new religions of China and Japan, early-mid 20th century Chinese Buddhism, and animal rights and welfare issues. He teaches courses that explore the ways religion is a vital force in the 21st century, the historical, textual and doctrinal foundations of Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism and Shintoism, and Paideia, a two-semester common course for all first year students addressing questions central to the human condition.       

Spencer Martin

At Luther since 2002, Spencer Martin has performed and taught at music festivals throughout the United States, Canada, Israel and Europe. An active chamber and orchestral musician, he performs frequently in the Luther College Piano Quartet and serves as the festival violist at the Bonneville Chamber Music Festival in Utah. His solo performances include Berlioz's "Harold in Italy" with the Luther College Symphony Orchestra in venues in Austria, including Vienna's Konzerthaus.

Martin holds degrees from Butler University, Wichita State University and the University of Minnesota.

His solo, chamber and orchestral performances have been featured in numerous radio broadcasts including National Public Radio, CBC, Minnesota Public Radio and Kansas Public Radio. Martin's CD, "Gems Rediscovered," was released on the Delos label in 2012. He can also be heard on the Innova label on the disc "Waves of Stone, Music by Brooke Joyce."

Spencer serves as co-director of the International Music Festival of the Adriatic, a chamber music festival for piano, strings, voice, and composition in Duino, Italy.

Brad Miller

After graduating with bachelor's degrees in computer science and physics from Luther, Brad Miller went on to earn master's and doctoral degrees in computer science from the University of Minnesota.

Miller has been a professor in the Computer Science department at Luther since 2003. Prior to his time at Luther, Miller was founder and vice president of product development for Net Perceptions, an outgrowth of the Grouplens research group at the University of Minnesota. In 2010 Miller and the rest of the Grouplens research team from the University of Minnesota were recognized with an ACM Software Systems Award for their lasting contribution to the software world.

At Luther, Miller is engaged in a new line of research, exploring technologies and tools for interactive textbooks. This work is under the umbrella of Runestone Interactive. Two textbooks, developed with Runestone Tools, are used at Luther and more than 100 institutions around the world.

In addition to teaching computer networks and graphics, Internet programming and introductory courses, Miller is developing a major in data science for Luther.

David Thompson

David Thompson has taught language, culture and Paideia at Luther since 2004, and regularly leads January Term courses to Spain, Ecuador and Peru. He also works extensively on collaborative projects with Luther students.

His research and published works focus on contemporary Spanish poetry by women writers and metacognition in language courses.    

Thompson holds a bachelor's degree in Spanish from Wabash College, and earned master's and doctoral degrees from Washington University.

Loren Toussaint

In addition to teaching in the psychology department at Luther since 2004, Loren Toussaint serves as the associate director of the Sierra Leone Forgiveness Project. He holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and social work, summa cum laude, from Southwest Minnesota State University, and earned master's and doctoral degrees in psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He also served as a postdoctoral fellow for the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research.

He is director of The Laboratory for the Investigation of Mind, Body, and Spirit at Luther, which consists of a network of students, alumni, colleagues and friends of the laboratory that investigate the psycho-spiritual antecedents, correlates and outcomes of health.

Toussaint's research has been featured in a number of print, online and radio outlets, including The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Des Moines Register, Greater Good, Miller-McCune, Ladies Home Journal, Scotland on Sunday, Men's Health, Psychology Today and the Associated Press. Toussaint recently co-authored "Forgiveness, Ego-Integrity, and Depressive Symptoms in Community-Dwelling and Residential Elderly Adults" in The Journals of Gerontology: Series B.

A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,400, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in 60 majors and preprofessional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: www.luther.edu.