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Welcoming New Faculty to the College of Arts and Sciences

September 24, 2019

We are thrilled to welcome the following new faculty members to the College of Arts and Sciences community.

College of Arts and Sciences

Norma Bouchard, PhD

Norma Bouchard, PhD, is Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and a professor in the Department of Global Studies and Modern Languages. She joins Drexel University from San Diego State University, where she was Dean of the College of Arts and Letters and a professor of European studies for four years. Prior to her tenure at SDSU, Bouchard was a professor of Italian and comparative literary and cultural studies at the University of Connecticut-Storrs for 17 years. She is a native of Italy who earned a master’s in Italian literature and her PhD in comparative literature from Indiana University-Bloomington.

Department of English and Philosophy

Maegan Poland, PhD
Assistant Teaching Professor

Maegan Poland, PhD, teaches creative writing through Drexel Storylab, and composition in the First-Year Writing program. She holds a PhD in English with an emphasis in creative writing from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where she was a Black Mountain Institute PhD Fellow. She also holds an MFA in fiction from the University of Mississippi, as well as a BFA in writing for screen and television from the University of Southern California, where she was a Trustee Scholar.

Her fiction has appeared in numerous journals, including Mississippi Review, Pleiades and Beloit Fiction Journal. Her writing has been awarded a Special Mention in the Pushcart Prize anthology, a Tin House scholarship and a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation. She has served as fiction editor for Witness magazine, and as managing editor for Yalobusha Review.

Department of Global Studies and Modern Languages

Monserrat Bores Martínez 
Assistant Teaching Professor

Monserrat Bores Martínez joins Drexel from Princeton University, where she taught intermediate and advanced Spanish for nine years. From 2011 to 2012, she was the acting associate director of Princeton’s Spanish program and served as a Fulbright faculty adviser for undergraduates. Martínez is active in the Hispanic community, including translating as a volunteer in the Pediatric Clinic at the University Medical Center of Princeton.

Martínez received her MA in Spanish from the University of Western Ontario, Canada, where she also took doctoral coursework in comparative literature. She is ABD in Spanish literature at the Pennsylvania State University. While at Penn State, she was co-director of the Education Abroad program in Puebla — a role that has been key to her development as a faculty member and student adviser. 

Parfait Kouacou, PhD 
Assistant Teaching Professor

Parfait Kouacou, PhD, received his PhD in French and francophone studies from the City University of New York (CUNY). His research investigates the relation between francophone African literary discourses and contemporary global issues. His research has received awards including the Institute for Research on the African Diaspora in the Americas and the Caribbean Fellowship, the Dean K. Harrison Fellowship and the Early Research Initiative Fellowship from CUNY's Graduate Center.

Kouacou previously worked as a journalist, a public information officer and a human rights officer with the United Nations in Côte d’Ivoire. His recent roles as co-chair of the Africa Research Group and as Human Rights Seminar Fellow at the Henri Peyre French Institute, CUNY, translate his strong interest in global affairs. Prior to joining Drexel, he enjoyed teaching French language and culture to graduate and undergraduate students for six years in Arizona and New York.

Lina Martínez Hernández, PhD
Assistant Teaching Professor

Born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia, Lina Martínez Hernández, PhD, has grown as a scholar striving to understand a core principle: how academic work can serve communities beyond academia. She focuses her research and pedagogy on issues like queer aesthetics and practices; epistemologies and modes of survival from racialized subjectivities in the Caribbean and Latin America; and, in sum, a continuous engagement and defiance with the centrality of identity when speaking about oppressed communities. Her book project, “La Negativa al Nombre. Literatura y Negatividad en el Caribe Hispano,” attempts to show the ways in which queer aesthetics in the Hispanic Caribbean are grounded on a genealogical praxis of refusal: to refuse as a path to create and liberate.

Martínez Hernández received her PhD in Hispanic studies from the University of Pennsylvania and her BA in literature and in history from the Universidad de los Andes in Colombia. Prior to joining Drexel, she was a visiting assistant professor of Spanish at Haverford College for three years. Community-based learning has been central to her work; as a Drexel faculty member, she intends to motivate students to learn how to walk, learn and create with communities beyond their campus.

Department of History

Yeonsil Kang, PhD
Visiting Assistant Professor

Yeonsil Kang, PhD, received her PhD in science and technology policy from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology in 2017. Her research focuses on the intersections of environment and nature, disasters, and the politics of scientific knowledge and engineering in East Asia. She is currently working on a book manuscript exploring the history and politics of asbestos in East Asia, titled “Material Time, Bodily Time: Asbestos, Slow Disaster, and Toxic Politics in South Korea.” In a second project, she is examining the envirotechnical changes of the Han River in South Korea in the 20th century.

Prior to joining Drexel, she was a postdoctoral fellow at the Catholic University of Korea and a lecturer at Hanyang University in Seoul. Her research has been awarded fellowships from the National Research Foundation of Korea. She also writes for popular media and has been involved in the publishing of the popular magazine Epi, which explores the intersections of science and society.

Nic John Ramos, PhD
Assistant Professor

Nic John Ramos, PhD, received his PhD in American studies and ethnicity from the University of Southern California in 2017. His dissertation was titled “Worthy of Care? Medical Inclusion from the Watts Riots to the Building of King-Drew, Prisons, and Skid Row, 1965-1986.”

Department of Mathematics

Yasmin Boolakee-Pant 

Yasmin Boolakee-Pant received her MS in mathematics from Albert-Ludwigs University in Freiburg, Germany. She has been a faculty member at Delaware County Community College and was previously a public relations specialist in Germany.

Darij Grinberg, PhD
Assistant Professor

Darij Grinberg, PhD, received his Diplom (master’s equivalent in Germany) in mathematics from the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich in 2011 and his PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2016. He joins Drexel following three years as the Dunham Jackson Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota. His research interests include algebraic combinatorics, noncommutative algebra, symmetric functions, Hopf algebras, enumerative combinatorics and invariant theory.

Fazel Hadadifard, PhD
Visiting Assistant Professor

Fazel Hadadifard, PhD, received his PhD in mathematics in 2019 from the University of Kansas. His research interests include fluid dynamics and nonlinear systems of partial differential equations.

Jeffrey LaComb, PhD 
Assistant Teaching Professor

Jeffrey LaComb, PhD, received his BS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2013 and his master’s and PhD from Duke University in 2019. His research interests include rare event simulation, dynamical systems, numerical analysis and mathematical biology.

Cecilia Mondaini, PhD
Assistant Professor

Cecilia Mondaini, PhD, received her PhD in mathematics from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. Prior to coming to Drexel, she held postdoctoral positions at Texas A&M University, Brown University’s Institute for Computational and Experimental Research in Mathematics, and Tulane University. Her research interests include analysis of partial differential equations, fluid dynamics and stochastic processes.

Thomas Stojsavljevic, PhD
Visiting Assistant Professor

Thomas Stojsavljevic, PhD, received his PhD in mathematics from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2019. His research interests include mathematical biology, ordinary and partial differential equations, parameter estimation, global sensitivity analysis, cellular automata models, network models.

Department of Physics

Jörn Venderbos, PhD
Assistant Professor

Jörn Venderbos, PhD, heads the Quantum Condensed Matter Theory group focused on the study of quantum materials. His research is aimed at understanding the fundamental properties of novel quantum materials, predicting and designing new materials for applications in quantum information science, and developing tools to describe the collective behavior of correlated electron systems.

Venderbos holds a joint appointment in the Department of Physics and in the College of Engineering’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering. Prior to joining Drexel, he was a postdoctoral research associate, first at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he was partially supported by a Rubicon Fellowship, and subsequently at the University of Pennsylvania. He received his PhD in theoretical condensed matter physics from Leiden University in the Netherlands.

Department of Psychology

Amanda NeMoyer, JD, PhD
Assistant Research Professor

Amanda NeMoyer, JD, PhD, received her JD from Drexel’s Kline School of Law in 2015 and her PhD in clinical psychology with a forensic concentration from Drexel’s Department of Psychology in 2017. She rejoins Drexel following her postdoctoral research fellowship in the Disparities Research Unit of Massachusetts General Hospital through Harvard Medical School’s Department of Health Care Policy, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. The co-author of over 20 peer-reviewed publications, she joins Drexel’s Juvenile Justice Research and Reform Lab under the direction of Naomi Goldstein, PhD, where she also conducted research throughout her studies at Drexel.

Department of Sociology

Sarah Hosman, PhD
Visiting Assistant Teaching Professor

Sarah S. Hosman, PhD, received her PhD from Boston University. Her dissertation project was an urban ethnography of Boston’s student neighborhood, specifically examining how neighborhood actors deploy cultural narratives to orient the neighborhood’s past and shape its future. Previous research has focused on Taqwacore, a subculture of Muslim and Arab American punk rockers who have forged community, identity and resistance in the post-9/11 context.

Hosman’s research interests include urban sociology, gentrification, cultural sociology, economic sociology, narratives of place and ethnography. Her current research focuses on the role of universities in shaping neighborhood outcomes, especially via the framing of local investment practices and cultural narratives. Additional research examines how and when adjacent neighborhoods forge coalitions for political gain, how and when they insist on neighborhood distinctions, and to what ends. Hosman has taught courses on urban sociology, popular culture and society, and the media.

Sonali Jain, PhD
Associate Teaching Professor

Sonali Jain, PhD, joins Drexel’s sociology department from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, where she was an assistant or associate professor for six years. She was born and raised in India, and earned her PhD in sociology from Boston University. Her research and teaching interests include South Asia, ethnicity and gender. Her research is published in journals including Ethnic and Racial Studies and Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies.

Amanda McMillan Lequieu, PhD
Assistant Professor

Amanda McMillan Lequieu, PhD, is an environmental sociologist of work and home. Specifically, she is interested in how working-class communities impacted by natural resource economies adapt to globalizing economies and changing environments across rural and urban contexts. She is currently working on a book project about the long-term residents of post-industrial iron and steel communities.

McMillan Lequieu received her PhD in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to coming to Drexel, she was a visiting scholar at the Department of Environmental Studies at the University of California Santa Barbara and at the Max Planck Sciences Po Center for the Study of Instability in Society. She has received awards from the American Sociological Association’s sections on Environmental Sociology and Public Sociology, the Society for the Study of Social Problem’s Labor and Community Development Networks, and the Rural Sociological Society.