Faculty Working Groups


Food Research Group

Contacts: Wendy Atkins-Sayre, Department of Communication Studies, and Andrew Haley, Department of History

The Southern Miss Food Research Group encourages and disseminates research relating to the culture, politics, science, and nutrition of food and agriculture. Formed in 2013 in the College of Arts & Letters at The University of Southern Mississippi, this research group brings together scholars from across the university to share ideas and promote interdisciplinary conversations with each other and the public. We sponsor speaker series, colloquies, and research that recognizes that "how we eat" is one of the most pressing scholarly questions of our time.

Please contact us if you are interested in joining the group, studying food at The University of Southern Mississippi, or if you are just looking for some expert advice

Website:  usm.edu/food-research

Facebook:  facebook.com/usmfood


Service Learning Seminar

Contact: Linda Allen, Department of English

The seminar provides a wonderful opportunity for faculty to engage with colleagues from across campus, develop innovative pedagogical strategies for community and civic engagement, and learn best practices for research in the discipline of academic and community service-learning. Graduates of the seminar develop lasting interdisciplinary friendships, become part of a engaged social networks both on and off campus, and are eligible for annual service-learning grant opportunities. Deadline for application is October 31, 2016.

Download application.


First-Generation Faculty Workgroup

Contact: Dr. Max Grivno, Department of History  

This workgroup provides a forum for faculty members who were first-generation students themselves to consider the experiences of first-generation students today and explore the possibility of a faculty-student mentoring program at Southern Miss. In the 2016-17 academic year, this group will meet to talk about ways to connect first-generation faculty to first-generation students at Southern Miss, including possible implementation of a mentoring program in fall 2017.

Interested? Click here.


Multidisciplinary Faculty Writing Group

Contact: Dr. Laurel Abreu, Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures

This cross-disciplinary writing group provides an opportunity for faculty members and staff across the University to meet regularly and support one another in their academic writing endeavors. Faculty members and staff  from all departments and in all stages of their careers are welcome.

Interested? Click here


College of Science and Technology: New Faculty Learning Community

Contact: Dr. Douglas Masterson, Associate Dean  

All new faculty entering the College of Science and Technology (CoST) will participate in working group on the “science of learning” and how to apply research-based teaching practices in their classrooms. All new faculty will read How Learning Works and meet five times over the course of the academic year to discuss this book as well as related topics.


The Urban Studies Collective

Contact: Dr. Monika Gehlawat

The Urban Studies Collective brings together scholars from different disciplines to begin a conversation about urban theory, development and history as it impacts American Studies generally and regional city space in particular.  With a particular focus on twentieth- and twenty-first-century cities, our collective will engage with scholarship from national and international theorists in order to apply their ideas to the local and particular.  Through these discussions, we will approach the problem of the urban from historical, theoretical, performative and statistical methodologies, thereby enriching our disciplinary thinking and scholarship on this field.  While the Collective prioritizes work on local and regional cities like New Orleans, Houston and Hattiesburg, we also take a global-historical view, engaging with macro-narratives of migration and immigration, architectural and spatial design, representational practices that range from the visual to the literary, and questions about how cities both large and small restrict access to the public sphere on the basis of race, class, sexuality and ethnicity.

 Interested? Click here


Digital Archives Research Group

Digital Archives SeriesContacts: Dr. Craig Carey & Dr. Joyce Inman

Regardless of discipline, the growing presence of digital archives has challenged all of us to ask innovative questions about our research and teaching. In the process, they have opened a number of radical challenges and opportunities in the classroom, encouraging faculty and students to incorporate archival materials into their scholarly work. We think a group committed to exploring how digital archives might be used to unsettle conventional practices, pedagogies, and methodologies would be of interest to faculty and students, as well as the broader public and academic community. Inspired by the recent turn toward digital humanities, our group will be guided by two questions. First, how have digital archives changed our understanding of the archive and archival materials (and, consequently, our understanding of our research)? And second, how might digital archives be productively harnessed by humanities scholars to experiment with new ideas, methodologies, projects, and pedagogies?

We are excited to announce a series of workshops, lectures and presentations on digital archives and their use in the classroom during the Fall 2016 semester. Learn more by visiting the Digital Archives web page or download the complete schedule by clicking the graphic to the left.


Freedom 50 Research Group

Contact: Dr. Sherita L. Johnson

The Freedom50 Research Group, as organized by the Center for Black Studies, is an opportunity for collaborative, interdisciplinary research that fosters the professional development of its participants for the benefit of the student body and the campus and local communities. We engage therefore in dialogues about race, the construction and systemic maintenance of racial privilege. We want to reframe the haunting issue of racism, as branded by the state of Mississippi, by identifying and addressing instead social problems today that lie at the intersection of race, politics, and region. In doing so, we will assess race relations among millennials, pedagogical practices, and institutional policies at Southern Miss to pursue equitable outcomes.


Interactive Teaching Group

Contact: Dr. Bob Press

This faculty group will meet periodically to exchange ideas on interactive teaching. Studies show that teaching which not only informs the students but also involves students in the learning process is much more effective. While conferences and articles address this, small group discussions and sharing of interactive teaching ideas—what seems to work, what doesn’t—provide a welcome format for improving our effectiveness as teachers. If you are interested, please complete the attached form. Please indicate in the notes section if you are interested in co-chairing this group.

 Interested? Click here