"Instruction in the classical languages on this campus is almost as old as the University itself." Thus begins the "History of the Department of Classics," written in 1987 by Drs. Richard Jensen and Thomas Worthen.
Classics at the University of Arizona, 1892-present
Throughout this narrative history of Classics at the University of Arizona since its inception as the President's personal responsibility in 1892, certain themes recur repeatedly. Faculty in Classics consistently have been motivated by an unyielding conviction that the study of Greco-Roman civilization is of fundamental importance to a liberal arts education and to an education that is truly liberating. They have put that conviction into practice by their vigorous commitment to undergraduate, and, more recently, graduate student teaching, sometimes under the most challenging circumstances. Faculty in Classics regularly have taught course overloads while at the same time achieving international reputations for their research. They have worked industriously to foster ties in Tucson and throughout Arizona, whether by giving radio talks, public lectures or podcasts, teaching seminars for the general community, serving on the boards of local organizations, or by participating in various other outreach activities. Since virtually its inception, the UA Department of Classics has been a pioneer in hiring female faculty members. In conclusion, the remarkable expansion of the UA Department of Classics from the first years of the 20th century to the beginning of the 21st can be attributed to two factors above all others: first, the uncompromising dedication of Arizona Classics faculty to teaching, and, secondly, commitment to the belief that constantly reinvigorated study and reappraisal of Greco-Roman civilization remains profoundly relevant to the experience of students living in the contemporary world. Today, Classics at the University of Arizona remains a resilient, vibrant, and innovative force uniquely suited to assume an important role in the field as it faces the new challenges of the current century.
History of the Department by period:
Drs. Jensen's and Worthen's 1987 account continues: "The University of Arizona Register for 1892-93 acknowledges that there had been no demand for Latin and Greek when the institution opened, but that arrangements had been made to provide adequate instruction in these languages. The Register lists no instructor for such courses but advises any interested students to communicate directly with the President."
In the following year, according to the third annual Register, students could take Latin "sufficient for entrance to the leading universities." That is, two years of the equivalent of high school Latin were offered through the preparatory school on campus.
In 1897 Classics was put on a more secure foundation when Frank Yale Adams was appointed Chairman of Ancient and Modern Languages. Professor Adams was able to provide three years of Latin in addition to two years each of French and German. In 1901 he was named President of the University, in which capacity he served until his death in 1903.
Adams' courses in Latin, French, and German were assumed by Louise Foucar Marshall (The UA's first female full professor), who was appointed Professor of Ancient and Modern Languages in 1901. In the following year the language programs were separated, and Foucar's successor, Marion Cummings Stanley, was appointed Instructor in Latin and English. She was joined by Hattie Ferrin, who was Instructor in Latin and English from 1903-5. Thus, female faculty were teaching Classics at the University of Arizona at a time when relatively few women with training in Greek and Latin held appointments at public institutions of higher education. With the addition of John William Corby to the faculty in 1904-5, the classical languages now were taught by three instructors. Corby, who had received his M.A. from the University, was appointed Instructor in Public Speaking and Greek.
In 1905 Levona Payne Newsom was appointed Instructor in Latin; later promoted to Assistant Professor of Latin and Greek, she remained in that position until 1916. Over the next few years, some of Arizona's most distinguished educators served in the Latin and Greek program, including Byron Cummings, Professor of Archaeology. Cummings eventually became Director of the Museum, Dean of the College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences, and Dean of Men. Under Professor Cummings' direction, the program in Latin was greatly expanded; 30 units were now being offered each year.
In 1919 Professor Cummings turned his duties in Greek and Latin over to Frank Hamilton Fowler, who served as Head and sole member of what now was called the Department of Classical Literature for eighteen years. After relinquishing the headship, Fowler continued teaching part-time until 1954, although mostly in the growing Humanities Program, where he also served as an administrator. Owing to Professor Fowler's vision and vigorous efforts, the Department was able to offer a regular program of courses in both Greek and Latin, despite the fact that he was teaching only half-time in Classics.
Garnet D. Percy was appointed Assistant Professor of Classics in 1937 and also served as Head of the Department and Chair of the Humanities Program. At this time Classics was a small department, in effect a mere appendage of the Humanities Program. The two faculty in Classics taught primarily in Humanities, and their small courses in Latin and Greek were given as overloads. While the relationship between Classics and the (now defunct) Humanities Program changed significantly since then, the Department's level of commitment to the humanities in the broadest sense has remained constant. Enrollments in Classics in 1937-8 were as follows: 13 students in Latin, 5 in Greek. A new course in mythology (Classics 175a-b) was instituted by Professor Percy. This course was to achieve legendary status throughout the Tucson community; surviving alumni today still assert that their lives were profoundly affected by Professor Percy's brilliant lectures. Percy's course is the precursor of the Department's current, highly acclaimed mythology course taught to over 500 students every semester.
Possibly due in large part to the success of the mythology course, the Department's annual report in 1941-42 notes a distinct increase in enrollment, with a total of 99 students taking Classics courses in the fall, along with 145 in the spring semester. A total of fourteen classes were taught that year. As Professor Fowler was then devoting almost all his efforts to Humanities, thirteen of these were offered by Professor Percy, who also somehow made time to contribute to the Humanities Program and to do radio broadcasts and other promotional efforts for Classics. Professor Percy's unflagging devotion to his discipline and the dissemination of knowledge about classical antiquity is carried on today by dedicated classicists at the University of Arizona and other institutions throughout this country. Professor Fowler retired in 1943, whereupon Professor Percy assumed complete responsibility for the Humanities Program while still maintaining a full program in Classics. In 1946 Percy was joined by Robert Palmer, Instructor in Classics; that year the two faculty taught a total of 530 students, with 275 of these enrolling in Classics courses (Greek, Latin, and Mythology) and the remaining 255 in 6 sections of Humanities.
In 1951 Dr. Donald Ayers joined the Department and remained at the University until his untimely death in 1969. The same year that Ayers arrived, two Arizona graduates in Classics were accepted into Ph.D. programs elsewhere: Mr. Colin Edmonson entered the doctoral program at the University of California, Berkeley, and Mr. Harold Evjen the program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Both went on to distinguish themselves in the profession: Edmonson for many years was Secretary of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, and Evjen became Professor of Classics at the University of Colorado.
Between 1956 and 1962, a number of instructors were hired: Dr. Edward Best (1956-61), who left to take a position at the University of Georgia; Charles Gross (1957-60), who resigned his position; Bruce Parsil, who was hired as Instructor in 1962 and remained until 1965, when he left to obtain his doctorate at Tufts University.
By 1958-59 the Department had grown to include four full-time faculty. That year enrollments were 415 students in the Fall and 498 in the Spring. The four members of the Department taught an additional 272 students in Humanities sections. Thus, for the academic year enrollments totaled 1185, or 296 students per faculty member.
In 1961 Dr. Richard Jensen, an Arizona alumnus who went on to earn his Ph.D. at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, joined the Department as an Assistant Professor and remained there until his retirement in 1994. Dr. Jensen made many enduring contributions to the programs in ancient and medieval Latin and to the Humanities Program; he was also instrumental in the development of the Arizona Junior Classical League. The Department now consisted of three full-time tenure-stream faculty members: Percy, Ayers, Jensen, with the fourth position filled by a variety of temporary appointments. At that time Rabbi Bilgray was also teaching Hebrew in the Department, but Hebrew language instruction was transferred to another unit soon afterward.
Dr. Thomas Worthen was appointed Instructor of Classics in 1965 after completing his doctoral studies at the University of Washington. Dr. Worthen progressed to Assistant Professor and subsequently Associate Professor and is now an Emeritus following his retirement in 1999. His appointment in 1965 enabled Dr. Jensen to concentrate on Latin, while Dr. Worthen oversaw and taught most courses in Greek. All members of the Department continued to teach sections in the Humanities Program.
In the annual report for 1966-67, Dr. Percy addressed a problem that continues to beset the Humanities Program to this day: as this program now taught 2,400 students annually, it was becoming increasingly difficult to staff courses. It had been customary for senior faculty in the various departments within the humanities to teach sections in the program, but with the introduction of graduate programs, the situation changed dramatically. "The senior men dropped out," Percy notes in his report, and adds that with the new emphasis on research and publication, the younger faculty "are simply not interested in teaching courses of the Humanities type. They want to teach courses at an advanced level in their own specialties. Some of them specify that they are not to be expected to teach Humanities, while others ask the same favor as soon as they become acquainted with the course."
The problems associated with the teaching of an undergraduate core curriculum in the humanities at a Research I institution have only been exacerbated since Percy's time. Nonetheless, the commitment of the Department of Classics to the core curriculum has never weakened. While faculty in the Department have distinguished themselves in research, publications, and field archaeology, they continue to contribute as large a share to the core curriculum/General Education in the humanities as Percy and his colleagues did in the 1960s.
In 1970 Dr. Marie Volk, later Marie Bahr-Volk, was appointed Assistant Professor of Classics. She almost instantly was regarded as one of the most energetic and popular instructors ever to have taught in the Department. Bahr-Volk was promoted to Associate Professor in 1976, but resigned in 1978.
The Department entered a period of rapid expansion in the early 1980s under the direction of Dr. Paul Rosenblatt, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Dr. John Schaeffer, President of the University. Dr. Norman Austin (Ph.D. Berkeley) was named Professor and Head of the Department in 1980; in 1982 Dr. David Soren (Ph.D. Harvard) joined the Department as Professor of Classics; in 1983 Dr. Jon Solomon (Ph.D. North Carolina) was appointed Associate Professor; Dr. Albert Leonard, Jr. (Ph.D. Chicago), who later became the editor of the Bulletin of the American School of Oriental Research, joined the Department as Professor of Classics in 1985; in the following year Dr. Mary Voyatzis (Ph.D. London) was hired as a Visiting Assistant Professor. Three additional appointments at the assistant professor level were made during this decade: Dr. Charles Chamberlain (Ph.D. Berkeley) in 1981; Dr. Holt Parker (Ph.D. Yale) in 1985; and Dr. Margaret Fusco (Ph.D. Chicago) in 1988.
Classics now was an energetic and prosperous department that could claim success on many fronts. The annual report for 1985-6 cited University President Henry Koffler as having designated the Department of Classics as "one of the University's fastest rising stars." There was much evidence to support the President's claim: the Department's enrollments were increasing rapidly each year; the faculty's research was bringing national and international renown to the university; the faculty were well-known and respected throughout the university and in the local community; high school teachers of Latin were looking to the Department for guidance and support. The Department had an excavation at Kourion, Cyprus, directed by Dr. Soren, which attracted special attention internationally because of the scientific information that seismologists were able to glean from the site. Dr. Voyatzis provided the Department with access to a second excavation, at Tegea in Greece.
In 1985 the Department of Classics instituted an M.A. program. Its first graduate student, a Fulbright scholar from Portugal, was hired by the government of Portugal to direct three major archaeological projects in her homeland. Soon after, two other students in the UA's fledgling graduate program published articles in refereed journals. After the Department revitalized the Arizona Junior Classical League, the number of Latin courses being offered in high schools across the state of Arizona increased dramatically. The annual report for 1986-87 records that the annual state JCL convention was attended by some 300 high school teachers and students.
Departmental faculty were also gaining a reputation across campus for excellence in undergraduate teaching. Dr. Solomon received a national award for distinguished teaching from the American Philological Association. All others in the Department had impressive student evaluations in their undergraduate courses.
During this period the Department instituted a two-year program in Modern Greek, which was immediately supported by the local Hellenic community. A formal agreement was made between the Greek community and the University of Arizona to ensure the continued maintenance of this program. Departmental outreach efforts in the community resulted in close liaisons with the Hellenic Cultural Foundation and the Humanities Seminars Program. The first Director of the Modern Greek Program was Dr. Stratos Constantinidis, now Professor of Theater at The Ohio State University. Classics Faculty were active in research and fund-raising in a variety of ways. In 1986-87, the Department offered its first National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute for college instructors, directed by Dr. Austin with a $120,000 budget. In 1986-87 alone, the Department raised a total of $400,000 in external funding (excluding sums raised in the local community).
The University's Fact Book for 1990-91 quantified the Department's contribution to the University in the 1980s. This source records an astronomical increase in SCH (Student Credit Hours) generated annually by the Department, i.e. from 2,173 in 1980 to 4,434 in 1987 (an increase of 104% in seven years). Although this increase in SCH reflects the addition of new faculty, comparison with figures for other units in Arts and Sciences (as the College was then named), most of which also enlarged their faculties during this period, indicates that the Department's increases during this period were truly exceptional. The increase of 2,261 in SCH generated by the Department of Classics represents 28% of the total increase in SCH within the College of Humanities during the years 1981-87. This fact in turn suggests that the success of the Department over this period should not be attributed solely to increased faculty lines or to increased enrollments in the university at large. Rather, the statistics chart a significant shift of student interest toward the field of Greco-Roman studies, a shift that also reflects the high quality of undergraduate teaching in the Department. It is clear that Classics was assuming a larger and larger proportion of the teaching mission of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Since 1987-88 some faculty had departed, but faculty members who brought new strengths to the Department's programs were appointed. Two assistant professors left the University to accept offers elsewhere: Dr. Fusco accepted a position at Vassar College in 1990; Dr. Parker accepted a position at the University of Cincinnati in 1991. As noted above, Dr. Jensen retired in 1994, and Dr. Worthen in 1999; following the retirement of each, generous donations allowed for the creation of an annual award to the outstanding undergraduate student in Latin (Jensen Prize) and in Greek (Worthen Prize). Over this same period the UA Department of Classics made five new hires: Dr. Marilyn Skinner (Ph.D. Stanford), from Northern Illinois University, was appointed Professor of Classics and Head in 1991, and subsequently served as editor of Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association (1995-2000). That same year, Dr. Cynthia White (Ph.D. Catholic University) was appointed Assistant Professor of Classics and Basic Latin Program Director; she is the primary architect of the successful Latin program the Department enjoys today. Dr. Frank Romer (Ph.D. Stanford), with previous service at Johns Hopkins University, was appointed Assistant Professor of Classics in 1992. Dr. David Christenson (Ph.D. Harvard) was appointed Assistant Professor of Classics in 1995, as was Dr. Gonda Van Steen (Ph.D. Princeton) in 1997. All these appointments in Philology greatly enriched Classics' teaching and research missions. These faculty members instantly received extremely positive evaluations from students, and created new courses for the core curriculum of the University.
Dr. Voyatzis was promoted from Assistant to Associate Professor with tenure in 1994. Dr. Romer was tenured and named Associate Professor in 1996; Dr. Solomon was promoted from Associate Professor to Professor in 1996; and Dr. White was tenured and named Associate Professor in 1997.
The Department of Classics was fortunate to have established a relationship with the College of Education, whereby Classics students could enroll in courses within both the Department and the College of Education so as to obtain state certification as teachers of Latin. In 1995-6, the Department of Classics instituted a Placement Service for teachers of Latin; no other such service exists in the South and the southwestern states between California and Florida. Many University of Arizona Classics B.A. and M.A. recipients have taken Latin teaching positions in Arizona and other states.
In 1995 the Department of Classics established an accelerated Latin sequence that enables students to complete two years of college Latin during the summer sessions. The summer intensive Latin program is an enormous success, and typically draws over 50 students each year. Department members also instituted and taught Freshman Colloquia, and a departmental plan for offering Senior Capstone courses on a regular basis was formulated.
At the beginning of this period Dr. Soren was completing his excavations at Kourion, Cyprus. He excavated for six seasons at Lugnano, Italy, and subsequently began excavations at Chianciano in Tuscany, Italy.
The inclusion of video-disc and CD-ROM imaging technology into undergraduate syllabi with the use of electronically-based information-retrieval equipment became part of the Department's educational mission in this period. Dr. Worthen assumed a leadership position in acquiring the expertise necessary to implement these technological advances into the Classics curriculum, and faculty members now utilize various technologies in the classroom. During 1994-5, with the aid of a Departmental Award for Outstanding Achievement in Undergraduate Education from the Provost's Office, a computer work-station was set up next to the student reading room in Modern Languages 209, with state-of-the-art computers, a scanner, and an ethernet connection. Classicists at the University of Arizona and elsewhere have played an instrumental role in the practical application of computer technologies: Dr. Leonard quickly foresaw that improvements in data base programs for personal computers made possible the realization of his ongoing MYCINDEX, a project for cataloging pottery from the Late Bronze Age Mediterranean.
Dr. Austin retired in 2000 and the Norman Austin Prize was subsequently established to honor the best M.A thesis annually. Dr. Christenson was promoted to Associate Professor in 2000, and served as Basic Latin Program Director from 2001-5. Dr. Van Steen was promoted to Associate Professor in 2002. In 2003, the UA eliminated the Humanities Program. As a result, Dr. Bella Vivante (Ph.D. Stanford University) and Dr. Richard Wilkinson (Ph.D. University of Minnesota) joined the Department, as Associate Professor and Professor of Classics, respectively. Dr. Voyatzis became a full Professor during her first five-year term as Head, which began in 2000. In the 2000-1 academic year, the line held by Dr. Worthen was converted to archaeology: Dr. Eleni Hasaki (Ph.D., University of Cincinnati) subsequently joined the faculty in the fall of 2001. In AY 2004-5 the Department's 1.0 FTE tenure-stream faculty consisted of six men (Christenson, Leonard, Romer, Solomon, Soren, Wilkinson) and six women (Hasaki, Skinner, Van Steen, Vivante, Voyatzis, White).
The Department followed up on its enormous success during the 1980s in providing quality instruction to undergraduates by creating several new classes for the University's core curriculum. Still further increases in enrollments and SCH resulted, and Classics faculty taught c. 2,500 students each semester during this period. Since 2000 c. 200 students continued to begin elementary Latin (i.e. Latin 101) each fall, and, typically, c. 30 began studying ancient Greek each year.
During this period, Dr. Voyatzis became Co-Director of the Mt. Lykaion Excavation and Survey Project in Greece. Since 2005 she has received over $250,000 in grants from the National Science Foundation, the Institute of Aegean Prehistory, the Karabots Foundation, the Wallace Foundation, and the Tucson Hellenic Cultural Foundation. Dr. Wilkinson directed excavations in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt and western Thebes. In 2008, Dr. Wilkinson received the university's highest faculty distinction when he was named Regents Professor.
Dr. Van Steen was remarkably successful in winning grants and fellowships during this period. She was awarded a Fulbright Foundation Scholarship to Greece (2007), a Senior Visiting Research Fellowship at the Internationales Forschungszentrum Kulturwissenschaften in Vienna, Austria (2006), and a Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Fellowship at the Center for Human Values, Princeton University (2001). Her first book, Venom in Verse: Aristophanes in Modern Greece , was the winner of the John D. Criticos Prize in 2001. Dr. Hasaki won a Whiting Fellowship in the Humanities at Bryn Mawr College in 2004.
Classics faculty won various university and COH teaching and service awards between 2000 and 2008. Dr. Soren received the university's Five-Star Teaching Award in 2004 and that same year received a UA Distinguished Service in International Affairs Award. Soren also was named Mortar Board’s UA Teacher of the Year (2005, 2007) and received a Mortar Board Faculty Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008. Dr. Romer won the 2004 COH Outstanding Mentoring Award, and Dr. White received the 2005 COH Outstanding Advising Award. Dr. Christenson was named 2006 University of Arizona Outstanding Graduate Advisor by the Graduate Student & Professional Council. Dr. Van Steen was named University of Arizona Outstanding Faculty Member by the GSPC in 2007. Drs. Christenson and Soren were awarded Humanities Seminars Superior Teaching Awards in 2008. Dr. Marilyn Skinner was presented a Distinguished Faculty Service to the College Award in 2008. Dr. Skinner served as President of the Vergilian Society from 2001 to 2003. She was named President of the Classical Association of the Midwest and South for 2006–7. The UA Department of Classics hosted a very successful CAMWS annual convention in 2008.
Dr. Voyatzis was reappointed for a second consecutive five-year term as Head by Dean Charles Tatum in spring 2005. That same semester Dr. Romer and Dr. Solomon announced that they would be leaving the University of Arizona to accept positions at other institutions (East Carolina University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, respectively).
Dr. Leonard retired and became Professor Emeritus in 2007. Dr. John Bauschatz (Ph.D. Duke University), with expertise in papyrology and previous experience at Swarthmore College, was appointed Assistant Professor of Classics in 2007. The Department made two tenure-track appointments in 2008: Dr. Rob Schon (Ph.D. Bryn Mawr College), whose expertise lies in Mycenaean Greece and who recently had been a Visiting Scholar at the Stanford University Archaeology Center, and philologist Dr. Christopher van den Berg (Ph.D. Yale University), formerly a Post-Doctorate Fellow at the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae (TLL) Project and with previous teaching experience at Dartmouth College, both joined the faculty in Fall 2008.
The M.A. program grew dramatically in these years. The results of a 1993 University of Florida survey had identified it as one of the premier M.A. programs in Classics in this country, and its faculty productivity and programs had been strengthen further since then. By the end of this period, the graduate program was on average receiving over 50 applications per year and had c. 30 students in residence. After leading the restructuring and revision of the graduate program, Dr. Christenson assumed the new office of Director of Graduate Studies in fall 2005. There were now four distinct M.A. Emphases in Classics: Ancient History, Classical Archaeology, Classical Philology, and Latin Pedagogy. In fall 2006, a record number (17) of students matriculated into the graduate program. As the result of careful revision of the M.A. Guidelines and increased faculty oversight that was initiated during this period, graduate students now usually compete their degrees in four semesters.
The Department successfully extended its efforts to increase enrollments in the Modern Greek program. A four-semester sequence (i.e. four courses per year) of Modern Greek was established, as also a 400 level course. Prior to the late 1990s, Dr. Voyatzis taught two of these courses each year, and for the other two the Department relied upon Greek or Greek-American graduate students at the University hired as graduate teaching assistants. With the hiring of Dr. Van Steen, 50% of whose time was dedicated to Modern Greek, Dr. Voyatzis was able to devote more time to archaeology. Dr. Van Steen forged extremely productive new relationships with various private foundations and Greek ministries. Since 2002, the Modern Greek Program, the Department of Classics, and the Greek-American community have benefited from lectures on Greek topics sponsored by the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation. In spring 2008 the Onassis Foundation sponsored renowned University of Michigan papyrologist Dr. Traianos Gagos to teach a Greek Papyrology seminar for graduate students. In 2002 the Greek Ministry of Education initiated a 3-years sponsorship of a modern Greek instructor to teach full-time at the University of Arizona. In 2006 the Ministry generously renewed its commitment to the UA Modern Greek Program by sponsoring another 3-year cycle for a new modern Greek instructor to join the UA Modern Greek Program. Since 2001, students in modern Greek language classes have received scholarships to participate in summer courses in modern Greek, in either Athens or Thessaloniki, which are generously sponsored by the Greek Ministry of Culture. The Greek Ministry of Education and the US-based Foundation for Hellenic Studies made generous modern Greek library donations, which have since been enhanced with annual funds from the privately sponsored Cutrules Endowment.
The Department of Classics' move to the Learning Services Building in 2002 brought graduate students and faculty into a physically unified space for the first time, and also created a technologically up to date workspace for all.
In spring 2009, Dr. Van Steen left the Department of Classics to accept a prestigious endowed chair at the University of Florida, and Dr. Hasaki was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure. Following the 2010-11 academic year, Dr. Skinner retired and assumed Emerita status.
In summer 2009, the Department offered intensive 1st and 2nd year Greek for the first time. The Intensive Summer Latin Program continues to flourish, and now draws students from across the country. Michael Teske continues to make valuable contributions to undergraduate instruction in the Department, as he has done during winter and summer sessions for decades.
In 2009 Dr. Soren was named editor of Etruscan Studies. That same year, the UA Department of Classics was the birthplace of an exciting new scholarly journal: the Journal of Ancient Egypt Interconnections. JAEI focuses on all types of interconnections between ancient Egypt and other cultures in the ancient world. It is edited by Drs. Wilkinson (Editor) and Schon (Assistant Editor).
In fall 2009, as the result of a university-wide reconfiguration of colleges and programs, the Department's classical archaeologists joined a new School of Anthropology. While Anthropology is now their home Department, the classical archaeologists retain half-time appointments in the Department of Classics. All degree programs in Classics, both undergraduate and graduate, are unaffected by this new administrative configuration. The classical philologists are now part of SILLC, a newly formed School of International Languages, Literatures, and Cultures that is made up of the Departments of Classics, East Asian Studies, French and Italian, German Studies, and Russian and Slavic Studies, and the Programs of Africana Studies, Critical Languages, and Religious Studies. Following a national search, a Director of SILLC was selected in 2010, Dr. Alain-Philippe Durand. SILLC remains housed within the College of Humanities, and COH Dean Wildner-Bassett oversees the newly formed school.
Dr. White served as Interim Head of Classics in AY 2009-10, and was named Head for a term of 3 years in April 2010. Dr. van den Berg left the Department in 2010 to accept a position at Amherst College. Dr. Mike Lippman (Ph.D. Duke University), a Visiting Assistant Professor in AY 2009-10, was extended as a lecturer for 3 years in spring 2010. Dr. Gil Renberg served as Visiting Assistant Professor in AY 2010-11. That same semester, Dr. Vivante, who served as the Department's second Director of Graduate Studies from 2008 to 2010, and Dr. White were promoted to the rank of full professor. Dr. Christenson, who served as Basic Latin Program Director from 2008 to 2011, was promoted to full professor in the spring of 2011. Dr. Karen Acton (Ph.D. University of Michigan) and Stacey McGowen (D.Phil. Oxford University) served as Visiting Assistant Professors in AY 2011-12.
The Department continues its many outreach efforts. In fall 2009 Dr. White and Latin teaching assistants Adam Cirzan, Brennan McDavid, and Hunter Nielsen began working closely with at-risk middle school students and their teacher Jaimie Gunderson, a UA Classics alum. This exciting Latin infusion project at Pima Partnership Academy was featured on PBS's Arizona Illustrated. In AY 2010-11 Latin teaching assistants launched an extremely successful Classics and Latin outreach program at Henry Elementary School in Tucson.
The graduate program continues to grow and thrive. In 2010, new endowed prizes in the names of Jim Doidge and Sandra Rhead Jones were established. In the fall of 2010, the Department of Classics established a new M.A. Emphasis in Latin Philology. During AY 2008-9, 12 students were awarded the M.A. in Classics; in AY 2011-12, that number grew to 14 students. The graduate program received an unprecedented number of applications in spring 2012 (70). Between 2000 and 2012, M.A. recipients were offered Ph.D. acceptances and support packages from the following institutions: University of California at Berkeley, Boston University, Brown University, Bryn Mawr College, Catholic University of America, Columbia University, Cornell University, Duke University, Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Stanford University, State University of New York at Buffalo, The Ohio State University, University of California at Los Angeles, University of California at Irvine Consortium, University of California at Santa Barbara, University of Chicago, University of Cincinnati, University of Colorado, University of Michigan, University of Missouri, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Rutgers University, University of Southern California, University of Toronto, University of Virginia, University of Wisconsin, and Yale University. Many other M.A. graduates assumed Latin and Classics secondary teaching positions, including several at nationally recognized BASIS charter schools.
Faculty continue to win major grants and fellowships. In 2011 Dr. Schon was awarded an Enduring Questions Grant ($25,000) from the National Endowment for the Humanities to develop a course on the subject of cooperation. Dr. Hasaki won a Margo Tytus Visiting Scholar Fellowship at the University of Cincinnati in 2009. Dr. Christenson was awarded a 2011-12 Loeb Classical Library Foundation Fellowship, one of the most prestigious international fellowships in Classics. In 2010 Dr. Soren won his eight Humanities Seminars Superior Teaching Award, and Dr. Austin won his second such award in 2012. In 2012, Dr. Christenson was named the year's University of Arizona Outstanding Mentor of Graduate Students by the Graduate and Professional Student Council, and in 2013 won the University of Arizona Graduate College Graduate Education Teaching and Mentoring Award.
Dr Wilkinson retired in 2012. His University of Arizona Egyptian Exepedition (UAEE) continues under the direction of Dr. Paul Creasman of the UA Laboratory of Tree Ring Research, who is currently teaching CLAS 4/500, Topics of Egyptology, in the Department. Dr. Wilkinson remains involved in the Egyptian project as its Founding Director.
During this period, Dr. Soren became a Principal Investigator of a University of Arizona/University of Florence excavation at Populonia, Tuscany, and Co-Sponsor (with Dr. Simonetta Stopponi of the University of Perugia) of UA excavations at Campo della Fiera, near Orvieto. Since 2009, Soren has accumulated ca. $100,000 in grants and contracts from the Cacioppo Foundation, Frontier Oil, Oxford University Press, and the UA (for promotion of Humanities Week).
In May 2011 Dr. White stepped down from the Headship in order to resume her duties as Professor of Classics. Dr. Steve Martinson, Professor of German Studies, was named Interim Head for AY 2011-12. Dr. Martinson was appointed Head for AY 2012-13. In December 2011 Dr. Martinson established a Graduate Student Educational and Professional Development Fund (GSEPDF), which allows current Classics M.A. students to apply for funding to support professional, educational, and outreach activities related to their graduate studies. In 2012 economic difficulties put an end to the Greek government's support of Modern Greek instruction that had amounted to an infusion of hundreds of thousands of dollars into the Department since 2002. The program will continue in AY 2012-13 under the stewardship of Professor Rip Economou. The Department hired Dr. Mark Thatcher(Ph.D. Brown University) and Dr. Philip Waddell (Ph.D. University of Missouri) as Visiting Assistant Professors for AY 2012-13. Dr. Norman Austin returned to teaching in the Department in AY 2011-12, as did Dr. Skinner in fall 2012.
The Department's Study Abroad opportunities expanded significantly. The Oriveto program, now operating year-round with an annual budget of over $400,000, is still one the university's most popluar study abroad programs. Dr. Vivante has established a summer study abroad program in Greece and Turkey, Myth and Landscape in Ancient Greece. In 2012 Dr. Hasaki established the Arizona in the Aegean Study Abroad Program.
On January 7, 2013, Emeritus Professor Norman Austin became Interim Head of the Department of Classics. The Department hired Dr. Robert Groves (Ph.D. University of California at Los Angeles) and Dr. Alexandra Kennedy (Ph.D. University of Washington) as Visiting Assistant Professors for AY 2013-14. In August 2014, Dr. Karen Seat, Associate Professor of Religious Studies, became Acting Head of Classics.
After a reorganization in 2015, Dr. Karen Seat became the Head of the Department of Religious Studies and Classics. In spring 2015, the department finalized searches for two Hellenists, resulting in the appointments of Courtney Friesen (Ph.D. University of Minnesota) and Arum Park (Ph.D. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) as Assistant Professors of Classics. That same year, Dr. Waddell was promoted to Assistant Professor of Classics. In 2016, Dr. Groves was promoted to Assistant Professor of Classics (Career Track). In 2017, the department finalized a search for a Latinist, resulting in the appointment of Sarah McCallum (Ph.D. University of Toronto) as Assistant Professor of Classics. In 2019, Robert Stephan (Ph.D. Stanford University) was promoted from lecturer to Assistant Professor of Classics (Career Track).