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College Grants Tenure to Four Faculty Members

January 9, 2014

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – Four members of the Middlebury College faculty have been promoted to the rank of associate professor without limit of tenure.

The board of trustees, at its meeting in December 2013, accepted the recommendations of President Ronald D. Liebowitz and the board’s educational affairs committee in promoting: Lorraine Besser-Jones (philosophy), Nicholas Muller (economics), William Poulin-Deltour (French), and Amy Yuen (political science).

Their promotions from assistant professor to associate professor will take effect July 1, 2014.

Lorraine Besser-Jones is a philosopher whose primary area of research is moral psychology. Her courses include Biomedical Ethics, Contemporary Moral Issues, Morality and Its Critics and the first-year seminar Visions of Morality. Her book “Eudaimonic Ethics: A Contemporary Theory of the Philosophy and Psychology of Well-Being” will be published by Routledge Press in 2014, and she is co-editing a second book “The Routledge Companion to Virtue Ethics,” which will be forthcoming with a year. Besser-Jones strives to guide her students toward the “practice of philosophy,” i.e., she teaches them to analyze ideas and build arguments that engage humankind’s most pressing moral issues. A member of the Middlebury faculty since 2008, she previously taught at the University of Waterloo and was a postdoctoral teaching fellow at Stanford University. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Tulane University, a master’s degree from Claremont Graduate School and both a master’s and doctor of philosophy from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Nicholas Muller is a scholar in the field of environmental economics and an expert at applying market-based approaches to managing and measuring the cost of air pollution. At Middlebury he teaches in the economics department and the environmental studies program; his courses include Environmental Economics, Conservation and Environmental Policy, and Principles of Microeconomics. His current research includes determining damages caused by harmful emissions from U.S. industries, the design of market-based environmental policies, and construction price indices for air pollution. The co-author of “Using Marginal Damages in Environmental Policy: A Study of Air Pollution in the United States” (American Enterprise Institute Press, 2012), Muller earned a bachelor’s degree at University of Oregon, a master of public affairs at Indiana University and a doctor of philosophy in environmental and natural resource economics at Yale University. He joined the Middlebury faculty in 2007.

William Poulin-Deltour teaches beginning-level language courses to upper-level content courses in the French department, and is committed to helping students engage contemporary France from multiple French standpoints. As a scholar he is trained as an anthropologist, and his research has focused on ethnographic studies of gay culture in France – in particular the impact of American-style activism – and more recently French secondary education and initiatives resembling affirmative action. Poulin-Deltour holds a Diplôme d'Études Approfondies from École normale supérieure des hautes en sciences sociales, a master’s degree from the University of Massachusetts and a doctor of philosophy from New York University. He is a skilled interpreter of cultural difference, whether it revolve around language, nationality, race, class, gender and/or sexual orientation. A member of the faculty since 2005, he is also a valued contributor to Middlebury’s academic program in gender, sexuality and feminist studies.

Amy Yuen joined the political science department in 2007 upon completing her doctoral dissertation at Emory University in which she applied game-theoretic models to unravel the behavior of third-party interveners and belligerents in interstate conflict. She teaches the department’s introductory course on International Politics, which is required of international politics and economics majors and of international and global studies majors. Yuen also offers courses in International Politics and Weapons of Mass Destruction, War and Peace, Understanding Intervention, War Games and the first-year seminar on Wars Within: Civil Conflict. Her current research in international relations focuses on peacekeeping efforts to help resolve conflict, and she explores the reasons why peacekeeping either does or does not succeed. She makes extensive use of quantitative analysis and modeling in her work, and has published articles in international relations journals that address interstate conflict and resolution. Yuen earned a bachelor’s degree at Duke University.

In addition to granting tenure to four members of the faculty, the board of trustees in December promoted three associate professors to the rank of full professor. They are Richard Bunt (chemistry and biochemistry), Jessica Holmes (economics) and Roger Sandwick (chemistry and biochemistry).The appointments to full professor will take effect July 1, 2014.