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  • Affiliated Faculty

    Johanna Foster

    Dr. Foster holds a PhD in Sociology from Rutgers University, with a concentration in Gender Studies (2000), and an MA in Applied Sociology/Social Policy (1994) from The American University, where she also earned a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies/Women's Studies (1992). She has taught sociology and gender studies for almost 20 years at a range of academic institutions, from private universities to urban community colleges, and with many of those years on the faculty at Monmouth University. She most enjoys sharing her love of sociology with students, and regularly teaches such courses as Introduction to Sociology, Introduction to Gender Studies, Race and Ethnicity, and Social Stratification. For many years, she combined her teaching and research efforts in social inequalities with work to restore higher education to prison communities, co-founding The College Bound Consortium for incarcerated women in New Jersey, and the college connections program for incarcerated women in New York. Her research interests includes intersections of race, class and gender inequalities, feminist theories of gender, multiracial identities and inequalities, and critical analysis of mass incarceration with an emphasis on women and prisons.

    Corey L. Wrenn


    Dr. Wrenn is a Lecturer of Sociology, holding a PhD in Sociology from Colorado State University. She specializes in vegan studies, critical feminism, and social movement theory. Her research focuses on political structures within the Nonhuman Animal rights movement, intersectional diversity efforts in social justice spaces, and anti-speciesism praxis. In 2013, she founded Vegan Feminist Network, a pro-intersectional, species-inclusive project that seeks to bridge academic and activist spaces while providing platform for marginalized voices. She is the author of A Rational Approach to Animal Rights (Palgrave 2016) and has been published in several peer-reviewed academic journals, such as Disability & Society, Animals & Society, the Journal of Gender Studies. She is the 2016 recipient of Colorado State University Department of Sociology's Graduate Student Research Excellence Award and the 2016 recipient of the University of Michigan National Center for Institutional Diversity's Exemplary Diversity Scholar.

    Jennifer McGovern

     Jen McGovern

    Jen McGovern, PhD, is a lecturer in the Department of Political Science and Sociology at Monmouth University who is passionate about teaching and learning sociology. She specializes in understanding how sport both reflects and challenges social inequalities, such as social class, race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, and sexuality. Her previous research focused on the ways that professional baseball's institutional structures have grown and changed and how local baseball fans tell narratives about baseball players as the game has grown more global in scope.


    Janice Stapley

    Janice Stapley is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and a past Director of the Gender Studies Program and past Chair of the NJWGSC. Currently she serves as the MU liaison to the NJWGSC.

    Her background is in Development and Social Psychology and she is Principal Investigator in the Social Development Lab (Edison Science Hall E20). Her areas of research interest include gender differences in emotion, particularly during adolescence and emerging adulthood, and the relationship between emotional functioning and overall psychosocial adjustment and adjustment to college. Across the lifespan she also researches gender and cohort differences in technology use and play in the elderly.

    Professor Stapley is currently working on her line of research on adjustment to college, with a Grant from NACADA (The National Academic Advising Association). 

    Paul Humphrey:

    Paul Humphrey

    Dr Paul Humphrey is Assistant Professor in World Languages and Cultures at Monmouth University. He graduated with a BA in French and Hispanic Studies and a PhD in Modern Languages from the University of Birmingham, UK. Dr. Humphrey's research focuses on gender, sexuality and African-derived religions in Caribbean literature. In his doctoral dissertation, titled "Gods, Gender and Sexuality: Representations of Vodou and Santería in Haitian and Cuban Cultural Production," he foregrounds the complex nature of women's negotiation of religious, social and political life as participants in these marginalised religious communities. In 2014, Dr Humphrey was awarded a dissertation publication prize by the Association of Hispanists of Great Britain and Ireland, and his book Santería, Vodou and Resistance in Caribbean Literature: Daughters of the Spirits is forthcoming with Legenda. He has also published articles with the Journal of Haitian Studies and the International Journal of Francophone Studies.

    Chad Dell:

    Chad Dell is Associate Professor in the Department of Communication. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin at Madison with a Ph.D. in Communication Arts. He teaches courses in television and screen studies at the undergraduate and graduate levels, including classes in television production and analysis, film history, and media policy. Gender Studies students might be particularly interested in his TV Criticism class (CO 375), which introduces a number of schools of criticism useful in the analysis of television texts, including feminist, ideological, and cultural criticism.

    Marina Vujnovic

    Native of Croatia, Marina Vujnovic, came to United States in 2003 to pursue her graduate education in journalism and mass communication. Before coming to United States she worked as a journalist for seven years before becoming a research assistant at the Department of Graphic Design and Communications at University of Zagreb. She also worked as a PR practitioner for Cyprian based PR agency Action Global Communications. She got her PhD at the University of Iowa in 2008 where she taught as graduate assistant in supervised and stand-alone classes. Since the Fall of 2008 she's been on the faculty of the Department of Communication at Monmouth University. She is an author of Forging the Bubikopf Nation: Journalism, Gender and Modernity in Interwar Yugoslavia, and co-author of Participatory Journalism: Guarding Open Gates at Online Newspapers.

    Pietro Sasso

    Dr. Pietro Sasso is an Assistant Professor in the Educational Counseling programs where he is responsible for the Student Affairs and College Counseling masters program. He holds a Ph.D in Education with concentrations in student development and college counseling from Old Dominion University and a master's in Student Affairs and Counseling from the University of Rochester. With over a decade of experience in postsecondary education spanning over five different functional areas, he has worked primarily in academic advising and alcohol education.

    Dr. Sasso has developed a research agenda focused on identity construction and college student development outcomes. He is primary focused on the conceptualization of male identity and how they use alcohol to subjugate women and reinforce hegemonic masculinity.

    Heide Estes

    Heide Estes is Professor and Graduate Program Director in the Department of English. She received her BA from the University of Pennsylvania and her Ph.D. from New York University. Dr. Estes' field of specialization is Old and Middle English language and literature, with attention to cultural contexts including gender and religious identity, and an interest in digital humanities.

    Dr. Estes' current projects include an interactive digital edition of the Old English Dialogues of Solomon and Saturn and a book-length study of early English representations of and ideologies about the environment, and how these ideas intersect with and/or challenge contemporary ecocriticisms.

    Dr. Estes was a Visiting Fellow of Clare Hall and a Visiting Scholar in the Faculty of Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic at Cambridge University during the 2014-15 academic year.

    Andrea Hope

    Andrea Hope is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health and Physical Education. She received her EdD in Health Education and Behavior Studies at Teachers College, Columbia University. Andrea's dissertation focused on parent perceptions of childhood obesity. She also participated in a large study with the Food Policy Institute on women, food and health behaviors. Andrea has worked with students on campus to promote “Change the conversation: fat-talk free week” a national campaign dedicated to increasing awareness about body image dissatisfaction and eating disorders among college women. Andrea currently teaches Women's Health, Lifespan Development and Health and Senior Seminar in Health. She is the faculty advisor for Eta Sigma Gamma, the Health Education Honorary at Monmouth University. Prior to working in academia, she ran health, fitness and comprehensive wellness programs for several corporations including Sony Music Entertainment, NBC, and The Army Materiel Command. Andrea has a teenage daughter and is very involved in promoting physical activity and sports among girls and women.

    Heidi Bludau

    Heidi Bludau is a Lecturer of Applied Anthropology. She graduated from Indiana University with a PhD in Anthropology. Her research focuses on the global market for healthcare workers. Her dissertation, “Searching for Respect: Czech Nurses in the Global Economy,” examines the motivating and mitigating factors that create a migration flow from the Czech Republic to other countries including the UK and Saudi Arabia. This work engenders a number of research interests including medical anthropology, globalization, post-socialism and gender. Her current research expands this work to consider the concept of the “global nurse” as a key player in meeting nursing shortages in developed countries. This project is based in current research on care-work migration as part of a global network, or global care chains, of which nurses make up a large part.

    Eleanor Novek

    Eleanor Novek is an Associate Professor of Communication at Monmouth University. She teaches classes in journalism, communication ethics, gender, race and media, and research methods. A former newspaper journalist, Novek conducts research on communication about and by the incarcerated, social justice and nonviolence. She is a co-editor of Working for Justice: The PCARE Anthology of Prison Education and Activism (University of Illinois Press, 2013), essays about using the arts, education, and activism to reduce crime and enhance citizenship for currently and formerly incarcerated people. Novek is state coordinator for the Alternatives to Violence Project, a nonprofit volunteer organization that offers workshops on nonviolence in prisons, schools, and community centers. In 2015 she will offer a new class, “Creating a Culture of Peace,” based on the study and practice of communication for peaceful social action and conflict resolution as practiced by individuals, groups and political movements.

    Claude Taylor

    Claude E. Taylor is the Athletics Professor-in-Residence Faculty and a part of the Department of Communication. He received both his B.A. and M.A. at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. His education also includes Graduate Fellow, the Eagleton Institute for Politics, and Rutgers University. Taylor's primary areas of interest are Communication Theory and Media Studies.

    His research interests include: Social Class and Mediated Representation. This consists of the relationship between contemporary media and political participation across identity categories, such as race, class, and gender. The relationship between social class, the media, and citizenship; the intersection of popular culture and contemporary U.S. politics are included as well.

    Lisa Dinella

    Lisa M. Dinella, PhD, is a research scientist who investigates the relations between gender identity, media, academic achievement, and career development. Her research program is housed at the Gender Development Laboratory at Monmouth University, where she studies the social and interpersonal factors that influence individuals' gender development, and how these factors in turn impact academic and career pursuits. She investigates early influences on gender development, such as the impact of media and marketing on young children's gender identity. She also studies young adulthood, investigating factors that are linked to young adults' academic paths. Her research has led her to create partnerships with school stakeholders in settings ranging from preschools to universities.

    George Gonzalez

    Dr. George González is Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Religion and Interdisciplinary Studies at Monmouth University. He holds a B.A from Yale University and an M.A.R. from Yale Divinity School. In 2011 he received his Th.D. from Harvard Divinity School, where he concentrated in Religion and Society. At Monmouth, George teaches courses in religious studies and philosophy of religion. George's published research is in religion and capitalism.

    He has begun an ethnography of Latino/a practitioners of perennial philosophy in the Boston area and is interested in encountering the diverse ways in which Latino/a immigrants 'spiritual' practices help them navigate and reproduce relationships of power, including relationships of gender. When he has not been in school or teaching school, George has worked as a case manager at agencies in New York City and Boston that serve survivors of domestic violence. He and his partner live in the farmlands of Monmouth County and enjoy exploring the wonderful state parks New Jersey has to offer.

    Deanna Shoemaker

    Deanna Shoemaker is an Associate Professor of Communication Studies with a specialization in Performance Studies in the Department of Communication at Monmouth University. She also serves as faculty advisor for CommWorks, a student group devoted to performance. She received her Ph.D. in Performance Studies with a Gender Studies portfolio from The University of Texas at Austin in 2004. Her dissertation examined “unruly femininities in women's staged performances.” Her special interests include feminist performance and directing practices, performance art and social justice, resistant representations of gender, sexuality and race in popular culture, performance of multicultural literature, and performance ethnography as an embodied study of culture.

    Dr. Shoemaker is currently researching the new rise of women's roller derby leagues around the country. She teaches performance-based courses, such as Performance and Social Activism, Performance Theory and Practice, Performance of Literature, Group Performance, and Voice and Diction, as well as core communication courses such as Public Speaking and Introduction to Communication. She has also taught Introduction to Gender Studies. Dr. Shoemaker is also a performer and theatre director who has worked professionally in Chicago and Austin, Texas.

    William Mitchell

    William Mitchell is Professor of Anthropology and author of Voices from the Global Margin (University of Texas Press, 2006) in which he examines gender relationships and other issues, including wife beating and the gendered aspects of the Shining Path war, a war that devastated Peru from 1980 to 1992.

    As Professor Mitchell explains: “Gendered behavior always takes place in social contexts that modify its expression. In Andean Peru, for example, men are considered dominant, but a peasant man is clearly subordinate to an upper class woman, and he will remove his hat and speak deferentially to her. Although peasant women earn and control their own income and can even deny food to their husbands, they are still in a precarious position vis-à-vis both peasant and upper class men. Many women, for example, believe that their husbands have the right to beat them. As women hunted for disappeared sons and husbands during the war, however, and created women’s clubs and communal kitchens to feed their families, they developed a sense of power that led them to question the authority of men.”

    Professor Mitchell discusses such issues of gender in his course AN/HS 367, Civilizations of the Andes, which covers Andean history from pre-Columbian times to the present, including the changed gender relationships imposed by the Spanish after the conquest of the Inca in the sixteenth century.