Michael Mays, Ph.D.
Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
Kathleen “Kate” McAteer, Ph.D.
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
Andrea Aebersold, Ph.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor, English
Andrea Campbell Aebersold (2010) received her Ph.D. in English Literature from Washington State University. Her areas of expertise include 20th century American literature, women writers, multicultural literature, and ecocriticism. Her research focuses on environmental literature written by women such as Octavia Butler, Toni Morrison, and Ruth Ozeki. Her most recent project focuses on environmental experiences and contested landscapes in Asian-American literature.
Robert Bauman, Ph.D.
Academic Program Lead
Stephanie San Miguel Bauman, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Psychology
Stephanie San Miguel Bauman (2011) received her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research looks at developmental concerns and the role of resilience and empowerment within the broader scholarly areas of multicultural psychology and health psychology. In the area of multicultural psychology, she recently co-authored a chapter about lifespan development which appeared in The Oxford Handbook of Multicultural Feminist Counseling Psychology. Given her interest in the generation, transmission, and application of knowledge to serve the needs of Latino/Mestizo and Native/Indigenous communities in the Pacific Northwest, she serves on the advisory board of the Pacific Northwest Center for Mestizo and Indigenous Research and Outreach. In the area of health psychology, Bauman examines the psychosocial and school adjustment of adolescent and young adult survivors of childhood cancer.
Associate Professor of Viticulture
Cigdem Capan, Ph.D.
Cigdem Capan (2010) received her Ph.D. in Condensed Matter Physics from the Université Pierre et Marie Curie in Paris. She has been invited to speak across the globe including Italy, Poland, England, and throughout the United States. Her research specialty is Condensed Matter Physics. It is a frontier area of research, at the crossroads of solid state chemistry, materials science, and quantum many body theory. The aim of this interdisciplinary approach is to understand and describe the quantum mechanics of a very large number of particles, be it electrons in metals, or atoms in optical lattices. Capan has experience in conducting a large variety of measurements, including transport properties such as magnetoresistance and Hall Effect, and thermodynamic properties such as magnetization and specific heat, at low temperatures and high magnetic fields. She is also experienced in the crystal growth, solid state synthesis, and X-ray characterization of new materials.
Assistant Professor, Fine Arts, Digital Technology & Culture
Peter Christenson (2012) earned his M.S.W. from the University of Michigan and his M.F.A. in Intermedia from Arizona State University. Christenson is a multidisciplinary artist, writer, and filmmaker. He is co-founder and Artistic Director of Left of Centre, a guerrilla-marketing/consulting firm and artist collective started in Detroit, MI. His current practice and research are rooted in interventionist, social art, and institutional critique theories and formidably influenced by his past experiences working as a licensed psychotherapist. Christenson’s research focuses on New Media and Digital Culture, Installation and Immersive Environments, Institutional Critique and Interventionist Theory, Relational Aesthetics, and Psychosocial Art. Christenson is also the adviser for the Digital Technology and Culture Student Club.
W. Jim Cooper, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Biological Sciences
Jim Cooper (2011) specializes in the adaptive divergence of cranial anatomy in fishes. He earned a Ph.D. in Evolutionary Morphology from the University of Chicago. His research interests include functionally intricate skulls of those fishes in the lineage Percomorpha, skull evolution and how genetic changes affect fish skull evolution.
Vanessa Cozza, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, English
Vanessa Cozza (2011) specializes in multilingual composition and rhetorical studies. She earned a Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Writing at Bowling Green State University (BGSU). Her research interests include student enculturation and assimilation, cultural differences in communication styles and its impact on literacy learning, teaching composition to U.S.-educated multilingual writers, Latino/as education, visual literacy and rhetoric, writing studies, critical pedagogy and social justice. Prior to arriving at WSU Tri-Cities, Cozza taught first-year writing as a graduate instructor at BGSU and a range of English courses at Neumann University and Delaware County Community College.
Sena Clara Creston
Clinical Assistant Professor, Fine Arts
Sena Clara Creston is an exhibiting interactive installation artist from New York City. Creston earned her MFA in electronic art from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2012 and her BFA from NYU for photography and imaging in 2005. Creston uses a combination of old and new technology to construct immersive electronic, kinetic and interactive sculptural installations as well as photographic environments. Her research and creative practice focus on the impact materials, process and mythology can have on interactive art and reflect on alternative associations with what is considered natural.
Andréa Davis, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, English
Brigit Farley, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, History
Brigit Farley (1995) received her Ph.D. in History from Indiana University. Her research interests include 20th century Russia and Europe, War and Peace in the 20th century, Holocaust, and commemoration, translation/annotation of historical works from Eastern Europe and Russia. Her expertise covers a wide span: Russia/Eastern Europe, US and European foreign affairs, 1914 to present, Cold War, Great War, World War II, European ethnic conflict, and the Holocaust. Farley worked in the Soviet Union as a United States Information Agency Exhibit Guide in the Soviet Union during the late 1980s. She shares her knowledge with the Richland Kiwanis, Pasco and Kennewick Rotary Clubs, senior citizen groups and local schools. Farley speaks Russian, French, and the Serbo-Croatian languages fluently and speaks Hungarian on a limited basis.
Allan Felsot, Ph.D.
Academic Program Lead
Associate Professor, Fine Arts
Vincent Hebert, Ph.D.
Associate Scientist, Entomology
Vince Hebert (2000) received his Ph.D. in Environmental Chemistry from the University of Nevada. Hebert is responsible for the administration of a state-mandated food and environmental regulatory science facility that conducts studies under federal 40CFR Part 160 Good Laboratory Practices (GLP). Hebert has a long-standing interest and professional involvement in understanding the environmental fate and transport of trace-level volatile and semi-volatile organics in air, water, and on land surfaces. His recent areas of research focus on field cover crop natural product biofumigation for soil-borne pathogen suppression and investigating efficacy of alternative emission-reducing field application practices to traditional center pivot fumigation. He also teaches graduate courses in environmental chemistry, natural products, and analysis of environmental contaminants.
Matthias Hess, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Molecular Biosciences
Matthias Hess (2011) received his Ph.D. from Hamburg University of Technology in Germany. He holds a joint appointment as Assistant Professor in the School of Molecular Sciences and as Senior Scientist with the Chemical and Biological Process Development Group at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland. He heads the Systems Biology and Applied Microbial Genomics Group at the Center for Bioproducts and Bioenergy at WSU Tri-Cities. Hess is also an Adjunct Scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI) in Walnut Creek, CA. Hess’s long term program goals are to contribute significantly to a better understanding of microbial processes at ecosystem and single-cell resolution, facilitate the development of more sustainable energy technologies, and educate and train the next generation of scientists to address and solve complex biotechnological and ecological problems. Areas of expertise include Metagenome Analysis, Metatranscriptome Analysis, Single Cell Genomics, Systems Biology, Synthetic Biology, Microbial Ecology, Microbial Genetics, Biotechnology, Microbiology, Host-Microbe Dynamics, Molecular Biology, Protein Engineering, Microbial Physiology, Bioremediation, and Geomicrobiology.
Steven Hoch, Ph.D.
Steven Hoch (2008) received his Ph.D. in History at Princeton University and has studied at L’Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris and at Moscow State University. Hoch’s research focuses on modern Russian history, European agrarian history, and historical demography. He has written two books and a number of articles on Russian history and the nation’s socioeconomic conditions. While at the University of Iowa, he received an $825,000 U.S. Department of Education grant to establish a National Resource Center in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.
Mark Mansperger, Ph.D.
Clinical Associate Professor, Anthropology
Mark Mansperger (2003) earned his Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from Washington State University. His research includes Cultural Ecology, Cultural Change, Human Evolution, and Primate Behavior. Primarily a cultural anthropologist, Mansperger is active across the field including physical anthropology and paleo-anthropological discoveries. Originally trained in economics, his research interests also include political economy where he studies comparative economic systems, globalization, and democracy. He is also interested in Contemporary American Social Problems and deeply committed to investigating the looming challenges of dwindling resources and exorbitant wastes that humans have created on this planet. Mansperger taught and worked in the entertainment industry in Los Angeles prior to returning to Washington.
Allison Matthews, Ph.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor, Psychology
Allison Matthews (2011) earned her Ph.D. in Psychology from Washington State University. Matthews is an experimental psychologist with a specialty in cognitive psychology. Her research interests include theoretical and applied study of the interaction between affect and “cold” cognitive processes within dual-process models of decision making and reasoning, biases in decision making and reasoning, and executive control in working memory in clinical and non-clinical populations.
Dan Mitchell, Ph.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor, Chemistry
Dan Mitchell (2000) received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Washington.
Janet Peters, Ph.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor, Chemistry
Michael Pieracci, Ph.D.
Clinical Associate Professor, Humanities and Social Sciences
Michael Pieracci (1991) obtained his Ph.D. in Psychology from Saybrook University in San Francisco. Pieracci’s research specialties include World History and Civilizations, Religious Studies, Cultural Psychology, Psychoanalytic Theory and Practice, Narrative Politics, and American problems. He has a background in psychology and social services working as a self-employed psychologist, for Catholic Family and Child Services in the Tri-Cities, and for several social service agencies in Portland and San Francisco. He is the co-founder of the “Reflection Café,” a community-based discussion group and is the advisor of the Humanities Student Organization.
James R. “Dick” Pratt, Ph.D.
Professor of Environmental Science
James R. “Dick” Pratt joined Washington State University Tri-Cities as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs on Aug. 1, 2008. He served as Interim Chancellor for the 2012-2013 academic year, transitioning in August 2013 to Professor of Environmental Science. Dick received his Ph.D. degree in Zoology from Virginia Tech, his Master’s of Science in Biology from Eastern Washington University, and his Bachelor’s of Arts in Biology from the University of Washington. He graduated from Kennewick High School in 1968.
Jennifer Sherman, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Sociology
Jennifer Sherman (2008) received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. Her research looks at the ways in which job loss and poverty affect families, particularly in rural communities. Her aim is to understand how labor market changes affect family life, cultural discourses, and gender norms. She has published numerous articles and is the author of the critically acclaimed book, Those Who Work, Those Who Don’t: Poverty, Morality, and Family in Rural America (Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press, 2009), which looks at how the members of an isolated rural community coped with downward mobility caused by the loss of timber industry jobs. She has also looked at issues of surveillance and control with regard to support services for parents, arguing that the process of seeking support ultimately reproduces class differences. Current research projects look at the impacts of the recent economic recession on families experiencing loss of jobs or income; farmer decision-making processes with regard to chemical inputs; and the impacts of agricultural practices on the larger communities, particularly with regard to the experiences of farm laborers.
Paul Strand, Ph.D.
Academic Program Lead
Elly Sweet, Ph.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor, Biology
Sarah Tragesser, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Psychology
Sarah Tragesser (2007) received her Ph.D. in Psychology from Colorado State University. Her research focuses on personality features associated with substance abuse. Specifically, she studies Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), features of affective instability/negative affectivity and impulsivity, and how these relate to alcohol and prescription opioid use. She examines these features through exploring motives for using substances, and the role of physical pain in substance use and dependence. She studies the association between pain and personality features, and how motives mediate the association between BPD features, substance use, and consequences. Tragesser’s research spans both non-clinical and clinical populations, including research among college students, individuals in treatment for substance use disorders, and individuals in treatment for chronic pain. Currently, she is researching how chronic pain conditions and their interaction with personality features contributes to both negative emotionality and to the development of opioid dependence and dependence on other substances.
Nikolaos Voulgarakis, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Mathematics
Nikolaos Voulgarakis (2012) obtained his Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Crete in Greece. His areas of research include Numerical Analysis, Multiphysics/Multiscale Modeling, Stochastic Processes, Molecular and Fluid Dynamics, and Nonlinear Dynamics with applications in Transport mechanisms in biological membranes, Cell signaling, Gene and Drug Delivery Energy Storage and Transfer in Catalytic Residues, and DNA transcription and sequencing. Current projects include mathematical modeling of nanomechanics and nanoscale fluid dynamics with special emphasis in a) gene and drug delivery, b) cell membrane dynamics, and c) localization and coherent transfer of energy in DNA and proteins.
Carol Wilkerson, Ph.D.
Clinical Associate Professor, Foreign Languages and Culture
Carol Wilkerson received her Ph.D. in Foreign Language Education from the University of Georgia. Her research focuses on second language acquisition and language teaching, including classroom discourse, code switching, language acquisition in adult learners, methodology, and language teacher certification. Dr. Wilkerson is a recipient of the Professor of the Year Award from the Foreign Language Association of Georgia. She has served on the board of directors for state, regional, and national language organizations. She was editor for Dimension, the journal of the Southern Conference on Language Teaching and a peer reviewer for culture and language journals. Dr. Wilkerson has been recognized for her professional service by the Georgia Chapter of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, the Foreign Language Association of Georgia, the Southern Conference on Language Teaching, and the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.
Native Plant Greenhouse Manager
Sciences Lab Coordinator
Last Updated: January 22, 2015