Faculty Learning Community

Year of Morocco Faculty Learning Community Participants

Sandra Bird
Professor of Art Education
Interests/Specialization: Islamic Art History and Architecture

Sandra Bird, Ph.D. is Professor of Art Education at KSU who teaches art education courses involving intercultural art education and curriculum, and art history courses related to Islamic art. Annually, her curriculum courses host a service learning partnership with local schools. Over the years, Dr. Bird has won several teaching awards from the KSU College of the Arts (COTA), the Georgia Art Education Association, The Istanbul Center of Atlanta, and the Outstanding Professor Award from COTA in (2013).

Her recent publications include a monograph, Creating a legacy of understanding: The Istanbul Center’s art and essay contest. Bird (2011) edited this collection of essays from various stakeholders in this Southeastern U.S. based contest and then published the work in the Middle East Institute Viewpoints Collection (an electronic monograph publication issuing from the Middle East Institute of American University in Washington). Bird also wrote several articles within this published edition, having served on the ground floor of the art contest development, facilitation and adjudication. She has also written chapters for other edited books, including “Teaching Islamic Aesthetics” in Jason Tatlock’s (2012) Middle Eastern History and Culture (University of Maryland Press) and “‘Iranian, Go Home’: Adversity and Solidarity in the Iranian Diaspora in America” in Muslims in American Popular Culture, edited by Iraj Omidvar & Anne Richards ( Praeger/Greenwood Press, 2014). Among her several journal articles, Bird has published internationally with “From floating flowers to opening doors” in Sahar El Azhar’s (2011) edition of Crossing Borders: A Transatlantic Collaboration, published in Casablanca by Force Equipement and the Ben M’sik Community Museum and in KSU’s Journal of Global Initiatives: Policy, Pedagogy, Perspective, (2015) with her article, “Intercultural connectivity: Intertwined through Islamic design.” Bird was also interviewed on “Islamic Art” for the Islamic Speaker’s Bureau of Atlanta’s Video Series, “Meeting Your Muslim Neighbor” (produced and aired by the Atlanta Interfaith Broadcasters, Inc.) in 2012.

Bird has also received KSU grants including a CETL Scholarship of Faculty Sabbatical Award for Spring 2011, a Tenured Faculty Scholarship/Creative Activity Enhancement award of $15,000 in 2007, and an Incentive Grant Award of $8000 in 2005. Most recently Bird (2016) received a 17,500 KSU Division of Global Affairs Strategic Internationalization Grant, "From Mecca to America: Cross-cultural Exchange in the Art Classroom,” that supports the co-teaching of two Islamic art related courses within the KSU SOAAD program with Dr. Mona Hussein from Alexandria University, Egypt. An exhibition of the resulting works from this project will be displayed in KSU’s Fine Art’s Gallery 2017. Bird will also present this work at the International Society of Education through the Arts at the 2017 World Congress Meeting in Daegu, South Korea in August 2017.

Christie Emerson
Assistant Professor of Nursing
Interests/Specialization: Nursing Workforce and Community Health

Christie Emerson, MSN, RN, is a clinical assistant professor in the Wellstar School of Nursing at Kennesaw State University and is also in the final semester of coursework toward a Ph.D. in Nursing Science. Ms. Emerson has accompanied students and conducted research in the United Arab Emirates and Oman since 2009. During academic year 2014-2015, Ms. Emerson served as the faculty coordinator for KSU’s signature annual country study program, the Year of the Arabian Peninsula and was recognized by the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center for her work toward the promotion of ties between the Sultanate of Oman and the United States of America. July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016, Ms. Emerson served as the co-principal investigator for a project entitled, "Connecting Communities: The Development of an International Collaboration on Nurse Staffing Metrics and Patient Outcomes," funded by KSU’s Division of Global Affairs Strategic Internationalization Grant. She is currently collaborating with colleagues at KSU and in Oman analyzing research regarding nurse leader perceptions of appropriate nurse staffing that resulted from the project. She is the first author of a chapter entitled, Women of Oman: A Systematic Review of Health Issues in Caring for the Vulnerable: Perspectives in Nursing Theory, Practice, and Research. For her dissertation, Ms. Emerson will be doing a life history of an Omani nursing leader.

Maia Hallward
Professor of Middle East Politics
Interests/Specialization: Women Leaders in Arab Monarchies

Maia Carter Hallward, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor jointly appointed with the PhD Program in International Conflict Management and the Department of Political Science and International Affairs. She has worked and/or conducted research in a number of countries in the MENA region, including the Palestinian Territories, Jordan, Oman, Morocco, and Israel. Dr. Hallward has over 13 years of teaching experience at the secondary and post-secondary levels, and has designed original courses on a range of subjects in online as well as face to face formats. Dr. Hallward currently chairs the curriculum committee of the School of Conflict Management Peacebuilding and Development, has received grants from the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center and the Department of Global Affairs for her research on women leaders in Arab monarchies, and has published four books and over a dozen peer-reviewed articles on topics related to the Middle East. Dr. Hallward conducted interviews with 20 women leaders in Morocco in October 2016 and with 20 women leaders in Oman in February 2016. Dr. Hallward regularly teaches classes in Middle East Politics and international conflict management theory and practice. She earned a PhD in International Relations from American University’s School of International Service. Dr. Hallward will draw on her first-hand experience, research findings, and contacts in the region to contribute to the framing, planning, and facilitation of the proposed project.

Nina Morgan
Associate Professor of English
Interests/Specialization: American Studies and Morocco, Crossing Borders Film

Nina Morgan, Ph.D. is a founding and honorary member of the Moroccan American Studies Association (MASA), a national organization housed at Hassan II University Casablanca where she has participated in numerous initiatives and programs since 2006 and serves as an affiliated faculty member of the Masters of Moroccan American Studies program. As the incoming Editor-in-Chief (2017) of The Journal of Transnational American Studies (Stanford University, USA), the premier journal in its field, and co-editor of the Routledge Companion to Transnational American Studies (England, 2018), Dr. Morgan has many years of experience involved in working internationally with scholars and publishing, having also served as an editor of the Review of Japanese Culture and Society, Asian America, East-West Connections, and most recently (since 2008) on the advisory board of Synthesis (National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece).

Dr. Morgan has served as the national co-Chair and Chair of the Women’s Committee of the American Studies Association, a role that involved policy development; administering and judging the international Gloria Anzaldúa annual essay contest; and organizing fundraisers such as an annual art auction as well as the annual Women’s Breakfast event and keynote lectures. Dr. Morgan has chaired numerous hiring committees as well as tenure and promotion committees at the college and university-wide level, she has been an elected university senator, and she has served as faculty on and/or director of study abroad programs in Morocco, Japan, and Mexico. In addition, she has served as the assistant chair of the department of English, in charge of scheduling hundreds of courses, full and part-time faculty assignments.

Dr. Morgan has given lectures and/or published work in Morocco, Germany, Mexico, Japan, Taiwan, Italy, England, Ireland, Spain, India, and Greece. In 2016, Dr. Morgan was named a Vielberth Fellow at the University of Regensburg in Germany as well as a REAF Fellow. In 2017, she will be honored as an Obama Fellow of the Obama Institute at Johannes Gutenberg University. These recognitions are related to her transnational publications, especially “Laws of Forgiveness: Mandela, Obama, Derrida” (2016). In relation to Morocco, her most recent publication includes “The Freedom of Information and the Imprisonment of Poetry: Guantánamo, Transnational American Studies, and the Right to Know” (2010); “Opening New Collaborations in North Africa: Building a Moroccan American Studies Association” American Studies Association (National) Newsletter, (Fall 2013);“From Lab to National Association: the Making of a “Moroccan American Studies Association” Moroccan World News (July 2013) (co-written with Abdelmajid Bouziane); and “Building MASA, the ‘Moroccan American Studies Association’: A Transnational Network of Scholars” Tangier American Legation Institute for Moroccan Studies (July 2013). She is scheduled to give a talk entitled “Moroccan American Studies in a Transnational Frame” in Germany in June 2017 in association with the Center for Intercultural Studies and the Obama Institute.

Amanda Richey
Assistant Professor of TESOL
Interests/Specialization: Language, Migration, Midwives and Education

Amanda B. Richey, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of TESOL and Literacy Education in the Inclusive Education Department at Kennesaw State University. At KSU she teaches in the graduate TESOL program and coordinates the TESOL Ed.S./Ed.D. programs. She has long-term experience working, teaching, and living in Morocco, first as a Peace Corps volunteer, and later as an EFL (English as a Foreign Language) teacher and freelance writer for Fodor’s Morocco. Richey’s research has focused on the intersection of culture, narrative, and curriculum, with a particular interest in the MENA region, the experience of Muslim families and faith communities in the U.S., and the representation of Muslims and Islam in official school curricula. An example of this work is the co-written article (with Lisa Zagumny), “Orientalism(s), world geography, and temporal paradox: questioning representations of Southwest Asia and North Africa” in International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education. She has published and delivered workshops on the topic of Islamophobia and education in many different contexts. As a Fulbright Scholar to Jordan during the 2014-15 academic year, Richey taught in the Faculty of Foreign Languages at the University of Jordan, developed a community-engaged, literacy-rich curriculum for the refugee education program, Jesuit Commons: Higher Education at the Margins, and taught EFL and education pedagogy to adult refugee students. Currently, Richey is finishing work on her narrative research project on the issue of reconciliation in adult refugee education programs in Amman, Jordan. Richey has an extensive background in narrative inquiry and oral history interviewing and has recently published a chapter on transforming teacher collaboration to include approaches to oral history and community asset-mapping that encourage teacher-community partnerships. Her co-edited book (with Linda Evans) Mothering and Literacies, explores the intersections of culture, motherhood, and literacy practices in multicultural, multilingual contexts. Recently, Richey (in collaboration with Nichole Guillory) developed and delivered a three-year, secondary arts-based curriculum project and participatory research study, Photovoice, at Osborne High School in Marietta, Georgia. Richey is a speaker of Moroccan Arabic (Darija) and Tamazight.

Gail S. Scott
Senior Lecturer of Pyschology
Interests/Specialization: Global Girl Talk & Tilila Center Had Soualem Casablanca

Gail Scott, Ph.D. received her undergraduate and graduate education at the University of Florida and her Doctor of Education degree in Psychological Foundations of Education has cognate areas of psychometrics and counseling psychology. Dr. Scott also earned a Master of Dance degree from the Chicago Ballet Company and the University of Chicago. Dr. Scott has received several university, state, international, and national teaching awards in her career to include the United States Burlington Northern Foundation Faculty Achievement Award and the Sears Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence. She was also awarded the American Red Cross International Humanitarian Service Medal and the ten-year Shriver-Kennedy Meritorious Community Service Award by Eunice Shriver for work with the International Special Olympics. Dr. Scott was also awarded The University of Florida Alumni Achievement Award for Global Humanitarian Service. Prior to joining the Kennesaw State University (KSU) faculty in spring 2010, she held multiple administrative positions including psychology department chair, director of counseling, testing, and student health services, the Associate Director of the Tri-State Graduate Degree Development Council, assistant academic dean, and research and grant assistant to the president. Dr. Scott’s academic and administrative history includes a Post Doctorate from The University of Florida where she served as assistant to the provost for BOR curriculum development and research. Additionally, Dr. Scott was a Georgia State visiting professor in the Department of Psychology where she taught undergraduate and graduate courses. Dr. Scott’s educational experiences as a NIH graduate student representative for the United States include attending an international developmental seminar in genetic epistemology taught by Jean Piaget in his laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland. Dr. Scott also co-taught a counseling and psychotherapy graduate course with Erik Erikson at Syracuse University. Dr. Scott is a member of the American Psychological Association and Southeastern Psychological Association. Dr. Scott is KSU faculty advisor for the student organization of the American Association of University Women and Psi Chi Psychology honorary. In addition, since 2011, Dr. Scott, with psychology colleagues, accompanies KSU Education Aboard students to Peru and conducts research and teaches at the Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola in Lima, Peru. Dr. Scott also traveled to Japan with KSU Faculty Learning Community in 2014 and will travel to Morocco in 2018. With her students, Dr. Scott is involved in transcultural diversity quantitative research and global humanitarianism for women and is a patron for the Servers Shelter for Women and Girls in Calcutta, India and the Candelaria Center for Children and Women’s Leadership in Lima, Peru. In fall 2018, Dr. Scott will teach and conduct diversity and humanitarian research in the KSU First-Year Learning Community Global Girl Talk courses centering on Leadership Programs for the Women of Morocco.