CTL Staff

Bruce Lenthall Bruce Lenthall
Executive Director, and Advisor on Educational Initiatives to the Vice Provost
215-898-4170
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Bruce Lenthall is the Executive Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, Advisor on Educational Initiatives to the Vice Provost for Education, and an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of History. He earned his Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Pennsylvania in 1999 and his B.A. from Carleton College. Prior to returning to Penn, he taught in the history departments at Bryn Mawr College and Barnard College. In his own teaching and research, he explores 20th-century U.S. cultural, political and social history. He is the author of a book on radio in the United States in the 1930s, Radio’s America: The Great Depression and the Rise of Modern Mass Culture (University of Chicago Press, 2007).

Ian Petrie Ian Petrie
Senior Associate Director
215-746-7677
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Ian Petrie is a Senior Associate Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning. He took a B.A. in History from Queen’s University and an M.A. in Chinese history from the University of British Columbia. He completed his doctorate in South Asian history at the University of Pennsylvania in 2004. From 2004 to 2009 he taught Western Civilization, South Asian History, Islamic History, and African History at Saint Joseph’s University. His current research concerns the history of technology and labor history as viewed through the study of multinationals in late colonial India. With students, he is also researching the history of a ship which transported indentured laborers from India to Guiana. He teaches courses on the history of science and medicine in Asia for the History and Sociology of Science department and on the Indian Ocean for South Asian Studies.

Catherine Turner Catherine Turner
Senior Associate Director
215-898-1686
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Catherine Turner is a Senior Associate Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning. She earned her B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed her Ph.D. in American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. From 1998 to 2007, she taught English and American Studies at College Misericordia where she also served at Honors Co-Director. Her teaching and research focuses on the business of publishing, taste, and public policy. She is the author of Marketing Modernism Between the Two Wars (University of Massachusetts Press, 2003) and co-editor with Greg Barnhisel of Pressing the Fight: Print, Propaganda and the Cold War (University of Massachusetts Press, 2010). Her current research examines the intersections between the publishing industry, literacy programs, and public policy during the 1920s and 1930s. She teaches a variety of courses on American literature in the English department.

Emily Elliott Emily Elliott
Associate Director
215-746-2230
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Emily Elliott is an Associate Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning. She earned her PhD in Biomedical Sciences at University of California, San Francisco, and her B.A. in Biological Sciences at Connecticut College. As a graduate student, she researched the role of innate immune system in autoimmune disease. Emily served as an HHMI Science Teaching Postdoctoral Fellow at Iowa State University, where she researched early germ cell development and biology education. She teaches First Line of Defense: The Role of Innate Immunity in Disease for the Biology department.

Julie McGurk Julie McGurk
Associate Director
215-898-2126
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Julie McGurk is an Associate Director for the Center for Teaching and Learning. She earned her Ph.D. in Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University and her B.S. in Neuroscience from the University of Pittsburgh. Julie researched the molecular mechanisms of synapse formation in development as a graduate student in the lab of Guo-li Ming as well as a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Rita Balice-Gordon at the University of Pennsylvania. As a postdoctoral fellow, Julie taught both introductory biology and introductory neuroscience at Rutgers University-Camden through the Penn-PORT program. She teaches Intro to Brain and Behavior and Developmental Neurobiology for the Biological Basis of Behavior (BBB) program. In 2013 she was honored as Teacher of the Year by BBB students.

Sara DeMucci Sara DeMucci
Administrative Coordinator
215-746-3613
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Sara DeMucci is the Administrative Coordinator of the Center for Teaching and Learning. She is a long time employee of the University of Pennsylvania having previously held positions in the School of Veterinary Medicine Dean’s Office, Perelman Quadrangle and the School of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Office.

CTL Graduate Fellows for Teaching Excellence, 2016–2017

Noa Hegesh
East Asian Languages & Civilizations
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Noa Hegesh is a fourth-year PhD candidate in the department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations. Her dissertation explores the conceptualization of sound and tones, and their relation to cosmology and emotion in early and medieval China. She holds a B.A. in musicology and in East Asian Studies from the University of Tel Aviv, and holds an M.A in East Asian studies from the University of Tel Aviv, and an M.A in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from the University of Pennsylvania. Noa has served as a teaching assistant for the survey course “Introduction to Chinese History and Civilization” twice at the University of Tel-Aviv, and twice at the University of Pennsylvania. At Penn, she was also the teaching assistant for the survey course “Introduction to Japanese Civilization,” and for a seminar titled “Introduction to Classical Chinese Thought.”

Joseph Hoisington
Mathematics
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Joseph Hoisington is a fourth-year PhD candidate in the Mathematics Department.  His research is in Riemannian geometry and geometric analysis and his thesis uses Morse theory and integral geometry to study the topology of submanifolds of constant-curvature spaces.  Joseph earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a Master’s of Science in Mathematics at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and was a fellow in the University of Washington’s Global Health Department working on the quantitative assessment of international public health initiatives before coming to Penn.  He has been a TA for classes in calculus, statistics and differential equations and has taught an introduction to mathematics for students in the humanities and social sciences.  He has won two departmental teaching awards and is one of the Mathematics Department’s Master TAs, training new TAs and mentoring them during their first semester in the classroom.

Najnin Islam
English
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Najnin Islam is a fifth-year doctoral candidate in the English Department. Her work focuses on the migration of Asian indentured laborers to the British Caribbean after the abolition of slavery and emancipation in the nineteenth century. Before coming to Penn, she studied at Jadavpur University in India where she earned her B.A. and M.A. in English Literature and then at the Center for Studies in Social Sciences where she earned her M.Phil. in Social Sciences. Besides serving as a TA in the English Department, Najnin has also taught a Junior Research Seminar titled, ‘Tales of Travel’. She completed the CTL Certificate in College and University Teaching in 2016.

Erika Kontulainen
German
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Erika Kontulainen is a fourth-year PhD candidate in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures. Her dissertation examines landscapes and artifacts in 19th-century German literature as sites and objects of memory.
Erika holds degrees in German (M.A.) and education (M.Ed.) from the University of Stockholm, and in Germanic Languages and Literatures (M.A.) from Washington University in Saint Louis. Erika has taught various language courses in Swedish, English, German, and Finnish ranging from high school to university levels in the US, Sweden, and Germany. At Penn she has taught German for three semesters and served as a TA for a course on the Holocaust in the German department and courses on post-1945 World Film History in the Cinema Studies Program. Erika completed the Graduate Certificate in Cinema Studies in Fall 2015, and the CTL Teaching Certificate in College and University Teaching in spring 2016. In May 2016 she was also awarded the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching by Graduate Students.

Theo Lim
City & Regional Planning
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Theo Lim is a fourth year PhD Candidate in the Department of City and Regional Planning. His research focuses on spatial variations in residential adoption and hydrological effectiveness of distributed green stormwater management infrastructure in urban areas. He has TAed applied statistics and urban and planning theory courses for three years in the Department of City and Regional Planning.

Elena Maris
Communication
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Elena Maris is a fourth-year doctoral student at the Annenberg School for Communication. Her research examines the ways media industries and audiences work to influence one another, with a focus on technological strategies and the roles of gender and sexuality.  She received her B.A. and M.A. in Communication from California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB). At CSUSB she taught 15 sections of the undergraduate course Oral Communication over three years. There, she received the Outstanding Graduate Teaching Associate Award from the Department of Communication Studies.  At Annenberg, she has been a teaching fellow for Critical Approaches to Popular Culture (COMM-123) and History and Theory of Freedom of Expression (COMM-322).  In Summer 2016, she will teach COMM-123. While at Penn, Maris also taught two classes at Princeton’s W.E.B. Dubois Scholars Institute, a summer program for high-achieving high school students from diverse backgrounds. 

Paul Mitchell
Anthropology
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Paul Mitchell is a third year graduate student in Anthropology at Penn. He earned his BA in Anthropology and Philosophy at Penn in 2013; in 2014, he was a Fulbright Scholar in Tanzania. His research broadly concerns the anthropology of the environment, political activism, and ethics, with particular interest in recent back-to-the-land, rewilding, and anarcho-primitivist movements. Paul has taught and tutored at Penn since he was an undergraduate, recently completed the CTL Teaching Certificate, and was awarded a Penn Prize for Excellence in Teaching by Graduate Students in 2016.

Stan Najmr
Chemistry
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A fourth-year doctoral student, Stan investigates nanomaterials for energy applications, with a particular focus on rare earth element-based phosphors. While earning his B.S. in Chemistry at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Stan was a TA for General Chemistry Lab and supplemental instructor for Physical Chemistry. Stan brought his passion for teaching to Penn, where he has worked as the General Chemistry Lab’s Head TA (2014-2015), earned the Chemistry Department’s award for outstanding performance by a Teaching Assistant (2014), piloted a new academically-based community service course, CHEM 010 (2015-2016), and earned the Penn Prize for Excellence in Graduate Student Teaching (2016).

Trishala Parthasarathi
Neuroscience
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Trishala Parthasarathi is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Neuroscience at the Perelman School of Medicine. Her research examines the neural and behavioral influences of imagining the future on human decision-making involving monetary choices between smaller amounts available immediately and larger amounts available after a delay. At Penn, Trishala has served as a TA and Head TA for Introduction to Brain and Behavior (BIBB 109), and received the CTL Teaching Certificate in May 2016. Trishala has also taught neuroscience classes to local elementary school students and is one of the lead instructors for Penn’s Upward Bound Neuroscience course that teaches basic neuroscience concepts to local high school students from low-income families.

Rebecca Rivard
Cancer Biology
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Rebecca Rivard is a 5th year graduate student in the Cancer Biology program in the Perelman School of Medicine. Rebecca uses proteome based approaches to investigate changing protein dynamics at the replication fork following cellular stress. During her graduate career Rebecca has spent considerable time discussing teaching and honing her skills. Rebecca has TAed two semesters of  graduate level courses, helped middle school students with their science fair projects, helped teach an after school program on interesting science for 3-14 year olds at the local library, completed the Penn CTL Teaching Certificate, and participated in seminars and online courses to help keep updated on teaching theory. 

Shantee Rosado
Sociology
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Shantee Rosado is a sixth-year doctoral candidate in the Sociology Department. Her research examines racial / ethnic identities and disparities in Latin American and U.S. contexts, as well as social movements. At Penn, Shantee has been a teaching assistant for four courses in sociology: Asian Americans in Contemporary Society, Social Statistics, Racial and Ethnic Relations, and Introduction to Sociology. She has also twice co-instructed a Penn graduate-level course titled Cross Cultural Awareness through the Graduate School of Education’s Programs for Awareness in Cultural Education (PACE). In 2015, she taught high-achieving high school students for the summer institute at Leadership Enterprise for a Diverse America (LEDA). Shantee will be teaching Critical Writing at Penn in the upcoming academic year.  

Jane Sancinito
Ancient History
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Jane Sancinito is a fifth-year doctoral student in Ancient History. She is a social and economic historian, writing her dissertation on merchants in the later Roman Empire. She has worked as a TA for courses in Greek history, Roman history, and mythology and has taught her own survey of Roman History as instructor of record. She completed the CTL Teaching Certificate and also was a recipient of the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching by a Graduate Student in 2015. 

SaraEllen Strongman
Africana Studies
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SaraEllen Strongman is fifth-year doctoral candidate in Africana Studies. Her dissertation traces the development of a black feminist tradition in the United States during the 1970s and 80s and examines how black women constructed autonomous black feminist spaces and institutions while simultaneously working to expand the white-dominated women’s liberation movement’s conception of feminism. She has TAed for courses in Africana Studies, History, and English and for the Center for Africana Studies Summer Institute for Pre-Freshmen. Prior to beginning graduate studies, SaraEllen taught and tutored high school students for the SAT, ACT, and AP exams.

Helen Teng
Nursing
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Helen L. Teng is a fifth-year PhD candidate in the School of Nursing. Her dissertation interest is in health and recently immigrated Chinese men working in the secondary labor market. She received a BA in Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley and a BS in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania. She also received an MS in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania and is certified as a family health nurse practitioner. At the University of Pennsylvania, Helen has been a teaching assistant since 2012 and she guest lectures for the family health nurse practitioner program. Helen has taught as a lab instructor at both graduate and undergraduate level physical assessment at the School of Nursing. She has also taught as a clinical instructor overseeing direct clinical care provided by nursing students on a medical surgical floor. Helen is also the course director for two consecutive summers for N103 (Psychological and Social Diversity in Health and Wellness), an introductory course for the accelerated BSN students. In 2015, Helen received the CTL Teaching Certificate.


Past CTL Graduate Fellows