Turn your course into an Honors Conference. Get to know a Faculty Mentor. 

As an Honors student, you can complete Honors Conferences as a way of meeting your Honors Program course requirements. You may arrange an Honors Conference when enrolled in any course taught by one of our Faculty Mentors. Honors Conferences are worth two course credits each.

Amr Al Azm

Dr. Amr Al-Azm

History & Anthropology

Dr. Al-Azm is Shawnee State's own "Indiana Jones." He has excavated a number of sites including Tell Hamoukar in Syria and one possibly associated with Ghengis Khan's final resting place in Mongolia. His expertise in archaeology, the Middle East, and Syrian antiquities has been sought internationally. Read full bio.

Michael Barnhart

Dr. Michael Barnhart

Music Appreciation & Sound Design

Dr. Michael Barnhart serves as associate professor of music and media at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, Ohio. He holds a doctorate in composition from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music where his primary teachers were Mara Helmuth and Allen Otte. His creative output includes works for soloists, ensembles, and computer music that have been presented both locally and internationally as well as on radio and television. Past projects include the creation of a rural multi-media studio funded by the Technology Literacy Challenge Fund, residency at the Studio for Electronic Instruments and Music in the Netherlands and recordings and performances as a founding member of the group Current Quartet. In 2010 he served as program chair for the Piece Plus Paper track of the International Computer Music Conference in New York. He has received commissions and support from the University of Cincinnati, OCEAn, Meet The Composer, the Third Practice Festival, the GE Fund, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, Ensemble Sirius, the Shanghai Opera Orchestra and Percussion Group Cincinnati. He is currently developing new music for automated pipe organ and celebrating the release of his realizations of John Cage's Imaginary Landscape Number 5 by Mode records.


Andrew Feight

Dr. Andrew Feight

Digital History & Appalachian Studies

Andrew Lee Feight, Ph.D., is a native of Sandy Springs, Georgia. He graduated from Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, and completed his graduate studies in history at the University of Kentucky, receiving his Ph.D. in 2001. He is a former associate editor of the Portsmouth Free Press and winner of the Kentucky Historical Society's Richard H. Collins Award for his writing on the history of the antislavery movement in the Ohio Valley. Dr. Feight's research and writing focuses on the history of the Portsmouth, Ohio, and larger Lower Scioto Valley


Janet Feight

Dr. Janet Feight

Literature & Appalachian Studies

Janet Feight earned her B.A. and M.A. degrees in English at Ohio University in Athens, OH, and used those credentials during stints as a proofreader and copy editor in Washington, D.C. before returning to graduate school and earning a Ph.D. in English from Pennsylvania State University in 2004. Her primary teaching and research specializations are: American literature, Southern literature, and Critical Theory. Her work has been published in The Southern Quarterly, Postmodern Culture, and most recently, in American Studies. She has been a faculty member at Shawnee State University since 2007.


Isabel Graziani

Dr. Isabel Graziani

Art History

Dr. Isabel Graziani teaches many of SSU's Introduction to Art classes, and also teaches upper-level art history courses. Dr. Graziani presented "Art and Power: A Female Perspective" on March 13, 2007 at the Southern Ohio Museum. The presentation was one of a series scheduled by SSU's Women's Center in celebration of National Women's History Month. Professor Graziani, who is a native of Italy and who now divides her time between her residences in Portsmouth and Athens, Ohio, plans to offer other Honors Art History courses in the future. Dr. Graziani has also served as a mentor for previous SSU Celebration of Scholarship presenters. As well, she organized a special topics study abroad courses, including one to Britain.


Derek Jones

Dr. Derek Jones


Dr. Dovel Myers

Information Systems

Preston Nichols

Dr. Preston Nichols


Thomas Piontek

Dr. Thomas Piontek

Film, Literature & Gender Studies

Image of Pablo Salinas

Dr. Pablo Salinas

Spanish & Latin American Studies

Image of Jennifer Scott

Dr. Jennifer Scott

Composition & Rhetorical Studies

Marc Scott

Dr. Marc Scott

Composition, Grant Writing, Rhetorical Studies

Marc Scott is an Assistant Professor in the English and Humanities Department and directs the Shawnee State University Writing Center. He earned his Bachelors degree in literature from San Francisco State University, his Masters degree in literature and writing studies from California State University San Marcos, and his doctoral degree in rhetoric and professional communication from New Mexico State University. His scholarly interests include writing assessment, composition pedagogy, research methodologies, and rhetoric. Professor Scotts doctoral dissertation focused on writing assessment and argued for ways students can become more involved in the assessment process. When not teaching, researching, or serving on committees, Dr. Scott enjoys spending time with his wife, Jennifer, and their pets Biscuit, June Bug, and Tripper. He also enjoys fishing, woodworking, and barbecuing.

Lavanya Vemsani

Dr. Lavanya Vemsani

History, Global Perspectives, Ethics of Non-Violence

Dr. Lavanya Vemsani is associate professor of Asian History and Religious Studies at Shawnee State University, Portsmouth, OH. She previously taught in the School of Social Sciences in the Department of Religious Studies, and Comparative Literature at the McMaster University (Hamilton, ON) and St. Thomas University (Fredericton, NB) in Canada, and Andhra University and B.R. Ambedkar Open University in India. She graduated from Osmania University, Hyderabad, India with M. A., and went on to complete two doctorates in History and Religious Studies (from University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad, India and McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada). She is also the recipient of a number of distinguished research awards and grants including the Best Canadian Ph.D. dissertation on South Asia 2007, Honorable Mention prize by the South Asia Council of Canadian Asian Studies Association and Post-Doctoral Research Grant of the Shastri Indo Canada Institute, Government of Canada and Junior Research Fellowship of University Grants Commission, Government of India. She is the author of the book, Hindu and Jain Mythology of Balarama and a number of articles on History and Religions of India. She Chairs the Religion in India Section of the American Academy of Religion- Mid Atlantic Region (AAR-MAR). Her research interests include Hinduism, Jainism, and Popular religions of India, Early modern women, early history of India, Classical and Modern literatures of India. She teaches courses on world history and world religions and in particular courses on history and religious studies of India including regions of South, Southeast Asia and East Asia. She also researches educational methods and theories. She has recently obtained Sloan C Certificate of Online Teaching and offers Online and Blended courses at Shawnee State University.

Kyle Vick

Dr. Kyle Vick


John Whitaker

Dr. John Whitaker

Mathematics & Statistics

Mariah Woodward

Dr. Mariah Woodword

Dental Hygiene