People

Jill Beckman

Jill Beckman, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Director, Division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Associate Professor
Dr. Jill Beckman is the Director of the Division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (DWLLC), Interim DEO of the Department of German, and Associate Professor of Linguistics.
Amber Brian

Amber Brian, Ph.D.

Title/Position
DEO, Spanish and Portuguese
Associate Professor, Spanish and Portuguese
Amber Brian is Associate Professor in the Department of Spanish & Portuguese. Her research and teaching focus on colonial Spanish America. Her publications address the movement of cultural knowledge and historical memory among native individuals and communities as well as between those communities and the dominant political sphere in colonial Mexico. She has published widely on don Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxochitl (ca. 1578-1650), a mestizo historian connected with the Indian city of Tetzcoco who is a seminal figure in the development of Mexican history.
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Andria Pooley

Title/Position
Program Assistant, Translation
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Andy Lewis, M.A., Linguistics

Title/Position
Instructional Services Specialist
Andy has an M.A. in Linguistics with a focus on teaching English as a second language from the University of Iowa. His professional interests include language instruction, the promotion of inclusive learning environments, and instructional technology and design. He has studied Russian, French, Italian, and German in the classroom and enjoys working with faculty and students in the division to aid, promote, and enhance the learning of languages.
Ari Ariel

Ari Ariel, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Director, International Studies Program
Associate Professor of Instruction, International Studies
Associate Professor of Instruction, History
Dr. Ari Ariel's research focuses on Jewish communities in the Arab world and Mizrahi communities in Israel. His interests include ethnic, national, and religious identities, migration, and foodways. He regularly teaches World Events Today and Designing an International Studies Project, as well as courses on the Middle East, Jewish History and Food Studies.
Aron Aji

Aron Aji, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Director of Translation Programs
Associate Professor of Instruction
Aron Aji, Director of MFA in Literary Translation, has joined the faculty in 2014. A native of Turkey, he has translated works by Bilge Karasu, Murathan Mungan, Elif Shafak, LatifeTekin, and other Turkish writers, including Karasu’s The Garden of Departed Cats, and A Long Day’s Evening. His forthcoming translations include Ferid Edgü’s Wounded Age and Eastern Tales, and Mungan’s Tales of Valor (co-translated with David Gramling). Aji was president of The American Literary Translators Association between 2016-2019.  He leads the Translation Workshop, and teaches courses on retranslation, poetry and translation; theory, and contemporary Turkish literature.
Beth Mellinger

Beth Mellinger

Title/Position
Senior Accountant
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Brian Gollnick, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Associate Professor
Director, Latin American Studies Program
Brian Gollnick works on modern Mexican and Latin American cultural history from a perspective broadly influenced by the thinking of Antonio Gramsci. He is particularly concerned with the interactions between cultures and with how cultural expression relates to social justice. These interests also influence his teaching, which aims to expose students to historical perspectives through objects of study including music, film, art, and literary texts. The study of literature forms part of a Liberal Arts education aimed at helping students find new interests and encouraging the skills and passions necessary for a life of sustained learning and development.
Chuanren Ke

Chuanren Ke, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Director, Foreign Language Acquisition Research and Education
Professor Emeritus
Chuanren Ke (柯传仁) is Professor in the Department of Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures and Director of the Second Language Acquisition PhD Program (aka FLARE, Foreign Language Acquisition Research and Education) in the Division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at the University of Iowa. His main area of research is in Chinese second language acquisition, instruction, and assessment. 
Claire Frances

Claire Frances

Title/Position
Director, Center for Language and Culture Learning
Claire holds a Master's degree in French Literature. She taught writing and French for many years before becoming the Director of the CLCL in 2019. Her interests include learning space design, instructional technologies, and peer education. She is working on developing opportunities for teaching and learning language and culture through cooking as well as incorporating the Global Seal of Biliteracy to help students earn a credential for their language learning. She's the current President of the Midwest Association of Language Learning and Technology (MWALLT).
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Constance Judd

Title/Position
Academic Program Management Associate
Constance holds a Master of Arts in Educational Policy and Leadership Studies, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in both Communication Studies and Asian Languages and Literatures. Prior to becoming an Academic Program Management Associate, Constance worked in the College of Education focusing on providing innovative, research-informed, and equity-based education opportunities to undergraduate students through the Office of Academic Support and Retention. Areas of expertise:Course Management for Department of Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures, Department of French & Italian, Translation Programs, BTAA CourseShare, and WLLC courses. Graduate Coordinator for French and Literary Translation
Professor Emilie Destruel, dark brown hair in a top bun and wearing a blue shirt

Emilie Maurel-Destruel, Ph.D.

Title/Position
DEO, French & Italian
Associate Professor
Emilie Maurel-Destruel's primary research explores the semantic and pragmatic underpinnings of sentence structure variation and how the principles that govern this variation are manifested in French, but also across languages. She has worked on a range of topics in the field of pragmatics and the syntax/semantics interface, including the semantics and pragmatics of focus, the prosodic realization of focus in French and its acquisition by native french children, and existential constructions and the definiteness effect. She worked collaboratively on focus in ASL and in English.
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Jack Doden, M.A., Linguistics

Title/Position
Instructional Services Coordinator
Jack has an M.A. in Linguistics with a focus on teaching English as a second language. He desires to enhance student learning experiences in the classroom by incorporating innovative technologies and promoting student identities. He is currently working on a project that aims to introduce virtual reality to UI courses.
Jenny  Ritchie

Jenny Ritchie

Title/Position
Accountant, University Shared Services
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Luke Whitaker, M.A., Linguistics

Title/Position
Instructional Services Specialist
Luke has an M.A. in Linguistics from the University of Iowa. Through his work as a researcher and instructor, Luke has gained valuable experience in designing and conducting experiments, analyzing data, presenting findings, and using empirically tested methods to guide language instruction in the classroom. He speaks English, Spanish, and French, and loves to find new ways of taking the language learning experience out of the classroom and into daily life.
Lynette Williams

Lynette Williams

Title/Position
Program Coordinator
Interpreter, American Sign Language
Meredith Mahy Gall

Meredith Mahy Gall, M.S.

Title/Position
Senior Academic Advisor, Division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Meredith Mahy Gall is the senior academic advisor for the Division of World Literatures, Languages, and Cultures (including all world languages, International Studies, linguistics, and translation) and global health studies students.
Newell Ann Van Auken

Newell Ann Van Auken, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Associate Professor of Instruction, Classical Chinese Literature
Newell Ann Van Auken teaches Classical Chinese literature, a world literary tradition spanning over thirty centuries. Her research focuses on early China, and she is also a translator.
Rebecca Clark

Rebecca Clark, M.A. Deaf Studies

Title/Position
Director, American Sign Language Program
Lecturer
Rebecca is currently the Director of Undergraduate Studies for the ASL Program at the University of Iowa. She earned her MA in Deaf Cultural Studies from Gallaudet University in 2011. This experience included courses in Aal, Norway and an internship with the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD). Prior to that she studied business at the University of Iowa, graduating with a BBA in Marketing and a minor in American Sign Language. Her interests in advertising and Deaf Studies inspired her to research the varied representations of deaf individuals and signed languages in the media.
Roxanna Curto

Roxanna Curto, Ph.D.

Title/Position
DEO, French and Italian
Associate Professor
Roxanna Curto is an Associate Professor of French and Spanish at the University of Iowa. She received her Ph.D. in French from Yale in 2008 and her A.B. in Romance Studies from Harvard in 2001. In her research, she explores the representation of cultural elements such as technology and sports in literature from the French- and Spanish-speaking worlds. She is the author of Inter-tech(s): Colonialism and the Question of Technology in Francophone Literature (University of Virginia Press, 2016). She has also published essays exploring connections between Aimé Césaire and Latin American literature, and the role of technology in the work of 20th-Century poets, including Guillaume Apollinaire, Blaise Cendrars, and Denis Roche. Her second book project, Writing Sport: The Stylistics and Politics of Athletic Movement in French and Francophone Literature considers aspects of physical culture in literature written in French from Europe, Africa, North America and the Caribbean. She recently co-edited the volume, Pour le sport: Physical Culture in French and Francophone Literature forthcoming with Liverpool University Press. 
Sarah Fagan

Sarah Fagan, Ph.D.

Title/Position
DEO, Linguistics
Professor
Sarah Fagan’s research and teaching interests include Germanic linguistics, theoretical linguistics, and the German language.
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Shahd Taha

Title/Position
Operations Specialist/Administrative Service Specialist
Responsibilities: Main Office Operations for DWLLC Building Coordinator for Phillips Hall
Sylvia Gomez

Sylvia Gomez

Title/Position
HR Manager
Yumiko Nishi

Yumiko Nishi, Ph.D.

Title/Position
Director of Undergraduate Studies, Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures
Coordinator, Japanese Program
Associate Professor
Professor Nishi's primary research areas have been verb semantics and the second language acquisition of aspect. She is particularly interested in discovering how learners’ semantic representations of verbs in L1 affect the learning of verb semantics in L2, and how this interacts with the acquisition of aspectual morphology in L2. In most of her projects, she pursues a cross-linguistic approach in order to explore how underlying universal patterns are manifested in the process of language acquisition/development, or in the representation of languages, as well as to identify cross-linguistic variations and their significance. She also investigates how these findings can be applied to language pedagogy, in particular, the teaching of Japanese as a second/foreign language.