News & Announcements

Committee Tasked with Studying Advising Structure

A task force of faculty, staff, and students has been formed to study the College’s current advising model and recommend a new academic advising structure that embraces a more developmental advising model.

The group is being chaired by Chuck Haberle, assistant vice president for academic affairs/academic facilities and technology planning. The other members are:

  • Yvonne Arruda, registrar in the Office of the Registrar
  • Manuela Barcelos, associate director of student success and retention/ESL, in the Office of Academic Services 
  • Quincy Bevely, assistant vice president for institutional diversity in the Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion 
  • Jacqueline Elcik, associate dean in the School of Business 
  • Deborah Levine, associate professor of health policy and management
  • Joleen Owusu-Sekyere ’21
  • Peter Palumbo, director of academic advising in the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate and Graduate Studies
  • Dr. Jennifer Van Reet, associate professor of psychology and director of the Center for Engaged Learning

Learning Space Upgrades Continue Around Campus

Over the winter break, improvements were made to several learning spaces around campus. These include:

  • Ryan 206 – This active learning classroom was converted to a dedicated active-learning computer lab. The new 40-seat lab essentially mirrors the design of the Ryan 105 lab, including multiple whiteboards and monitors for student team activities, as well as Solstice screen-sharing capability.
  • Ruane Lower Level classrooms – These four seminar classrooms were upgraded with Apple TV.
  • Smith 227 classroom – A new presentation screen was installed.
  • Howley Hall – A sprinkler system and ceiling grid was installed on the first floor of Howley. This work was part of the larger Howley renovation project, which is ongoing.
  • Library – Approximately 100 new study carrels were added to the first floor of the library, providing a significant increase to the student seating capacity in the building.

Faculty Resource Reminder: Funding Opportunities, Faculty Success Program

While you may have seen several emails regarding various faculty development initiatives, I wanted to remind you of a few of the resources available.

Providence College has been a member of the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity (NCFDD) for the past three years, and we have been working to promote faculty engagement with the rich resources they have available. This semester, three faculty members will participate in the Faculty Success Program:

  • Sydnee Manley (Accountancy)
  • Heather Allcock (Elementary/Special Education)
  • Mintzi Martínez-Rivera (Sociology)

 This is a 12-week virtual program where faculty are learning to:

  • understand the common time challenges scholars face in balancing research, teaching, and service with home life;
  • avoid the most common time-management mistakes faculty make;
  • develop a consistent daily writing routine to increase research productivity;
  • learn why and how to align work time with institutional priorities, personal values, and long-term goals;
  • develop a network of support and accountability for academic writing; and
  • create a local network of mentors for long-term success

For more details:

As for other faculty resources, I’d like to remind you of several opportunities available to you – many of which can be found on this faculty funding table in the College’s MyPC portal. Additionally, we are pleased to offer “Just in Time” funds of up to $500 to Ordinary faculty to cover expenses related to scholarly activity (e.g., interview transcription, travel to a site, research software, etc.). Submit a brief application through Apply.

We also have funds to support Ordinary faculty who are interested in pursuing leadership development through participation in conferences or specialized workshops. You can apply for leadership development funds through Apply. As a reminder, Committee on Aid to Faculty Research (CAFR) applications will be due on February 18, 2020.

For more information on any of the aforementioned resources, contact Dr. Laurie Grupp, associate provost for faculty affairs, at or Dawn Terry, administrative coordinator for faculty affairs, at

Dr. Sharon Murphy Earns NEH Fellowship

Dr. Sharon Ann Murphy, professor of history, has been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) fellowship. NEH Fellowships are extraordinarily competitive awards granted to individual scholars pursuing projects that embody exceptional research, rigorous analysis, and clear writing. Dr. Murphy’s project was one of 99 approved applications out of the 1,220 received across all four fellowships programs (8% success rate).

The fellowship will provide funding to finish her book, Banking and Slavery in the Antebellum South. This project focuses on the conscious choices made by bankers to directly, knowingly, and explicitly interact with the slave system. Dr. Murphy’s research reveals that southern commercial banks accepted slaves as collateral for loans, helped underwrite the sale of slaves, and sold slave property as part of foreclosure proceedings. Commercial bank involvement with slavery occurred throughout the Antebellum period and across the South, placing southern banks at the heart of the domestic slave trade.

This project will result in the first major monograph on the relationship between banking and slavery, shedding light on how these financial relationships worked across the South. Yet, many banks limited their direct involvement with slavery, demonstrating that capitalism did not need slavery to develop. Slavery was intricately, but not inevitably, tied up with the capitalist system.

Leave a Reply