New to the Hill

Eight new tenure-track faculty will begin teaching in Gambier this fall.

By David Hoyt ’14

Eight new tenure-track faculty have joined the Kenyon community for the 2022-2023 academic year. “We’re excited to welcome these talented colleagues to our faculty,” said Acting Provost Sheryl Hemkin, whose office oversees the College’s academic division. “Their expertise in a variety of fields and commitment to stellar teaching will benefit our students greatly, and I can’t wait to get to know them all as members of our community.”

Marci Cottingham

Associate Professor of Sociology
2013 — Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Akron
2009 — Master of Arts from Indiana University of Pennsylvania
2006 — Bachelor of Arts from Oral Roberts University

Marci Cottingham’s research examines the relationship between emotions, social life, and inequalities, including how emotions are shaped by social hierarchies (class, gender, race), occupations and digital media. Her past projects have looked at the emotional payoff of sports fandom, the emotional demands of nursing, the experiences of healthy volunteers in clinical trials, and humor practices on Twitter.

Prior to joining Kenyon, Cottingham was an associate professor of sociology at the University of Amsterdam and a fellow at the Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg Institute for Advanced Studies in Germany from 2019 to 2020. Her book, “Practical Feelings,” was published in 2022 with Oxford University Press. 

Alfonso Fierro

Assistant Professor of Spanish
2022 — Doctor of Philosophy from the University of California, Berkeley
2013 — Bachelor of Arts from Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México

Alfonso Fierro received his doctorate in Hispanic languages and literatures from UC Berkeley. His research attempts to understand how futurist, utopian, and speculative forms of literature and architecture in Latin America relate to urban struggles and social movements in the region. His doctoral dissertation, “Inhabiting Utopias,” reconstructs post-revolutionary Mexico’s literary and architectural urban utopianism (1919-1959) by analyzing science fiction novels, experimental architecture projects, futurist magazines and other material.   

Fierro writes regularly in the magazine Arquine and occasionally in other media such as Public Books and Jardín Lac. He is co-curator of the art exhibit “Cartografías Ocultas: Circuitos del Arte Correo en México” (2021-2022). In his free time, he likes to garden. 

Manami Ishimura

Assistant Professor of Studio Art
2018 — Master of Fine Arts from Texas A&M University—Corpus Christi 
2012 — Bachelor of Fine Arts from Tama Art University

Manami Ishimura was born in Tokyo, Japan, received her bachelor of fine arts in sculpture at Tama Art University in Japan in 2012 and earned her master of fine arts degree in sculpture and ceramics at Texas A&M University—Corpus Christi in 2018. Her handwork strives to depict the ephemeral beauty of moments that generally go unseen.

Ishimura conceptually addresses the cultural social issue using an extensive approach sculpture to space to generate emphatic aesthetic crossing cultures. Her art practice is a wide range from temporary installation to public art. Ishimura’s continued exploration of ways to celebrate universality of art across cultures led her to exhibit both nationally and internationally including at Biwako Binnale, Shiga, Japan; Gallery C at Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan; and the Masur Museum of Art in Monroe, Louisiana. She contributed a permanent public art piece as a Windgate Artist in Residence at Arkansas Tech University.

Daniel Kolliner

Wright Family Assistant Professor of Economics
2022 — Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Maryland
2012 — Bachelor of Arts from Oberlin College

Daniel Kolliner is an applied microeconomist with an interest in topics related to political economy and public economics. His current research aims to understand how political institutions impact the distribution of public goods and services and what types of policies may mitigate these results. He leverages compelling quasi-experimental research designs and creative uses of often underused publicly available data sources to estimate the causal effects of these institutions.

Prior to joining Kenyon, Kolliner earned his doctorate at the University of Maryland. He has also spent time working at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and as a risk analyst. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his dog Bean, playing board games and running.

Peter Kropp

Assistant Professor of Biology
2018 — Doctor of Philosophy from Vanderbilt University
2012 — Bachelor of Arts from Colgate University

Peter Kropp’s research group uses genetic, pharmacological and organismal techniques to understand the intersection of metabolism and cellular identity and function. Kropp’s research is currently focused on using the microscopic nematode Caenorhabditis elegans to investigate mitochondrial diseases and dysfunctions.

Prior to Kenyon, Kropp was a postdoctoral fellow in the Laboratory of Biochemistry and Genetics at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. He has taught at the University of Maryland and the Foundation for Advanced Education in the Sciences.

Michael Leong

Robert P. Hubbard Assistant Professor of Poetry
2013 — Doctor of Philosophy from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey
2003 — Master of Fine Arts from Sarah Lawrence College
2000 — Bachelor of Arts from Dartmouth College

Michael Leong is the author of the critical study “Contested Records: The Turn to Documents in Contemporary North American Poetry” (University of Iowa Press, 2020) and the poetry books “e.s.p.” (Silenced Press, 2009), “Cutting Time with a Knife” (Black Square Editions, 2012), “Who Unfolded My Origami Brain?” (Fence Digital, 2017), and “Words on Edge” (Black Square Editions, 2018). His creative work has been anthologized in “The &NOW Awards 2: The Best Innovative Writing” (Lake Forest College Press, 2013), “Best American Experimental Writing 2018” (Wesleyan University Press, 2018), and “Bettering American Poetry, Volume 3” (Bettering Books, 2019). His co-translation, with Ignacio Infante, of Vicente Huidobro’s long poem “Sky-Quake: Tremor of Heaven” was published by co•im•press in 2020. He serves on the editorial board of American Literature and the advisory board of Journal of Modern Literature. He is currently working on a long poem called “Disorientations” and a critical book tentatively entitled “Post-Craft: Essays on Pedagogy, Poetics, and Experimental Literature.”

Lauren Rudolph

Assistant Professor of Neuroscience
2014 — Doctor of Philosophy from Indiana University
2008 — Bachelor of Science from Washington and Lee University

Lauren Rudolph’s research is in the field of behavioral neuroendocrinology and she is specifically interested in how hormones affect the nervous system across development and in adulthood. Her current research focuses on how steroid hormones such as estrogens and androgens shape the structure and function of neurons, neural systems and influence a range of behaviors including reproduction. She addresses these questions in rodents using a variety of experimental techniques including immunohistochemistry, neuromorphology and behavioral assays.

Prior to Kenyon, Rudolph was a faculty member in the biology department at Allegheny College for three years and a visiting faculty member in the Department of Neuroscience at Pomona College following her postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA.

Hao Zhou

Assistant Professor of Film
2022 — Master of Arts from the University of Iowa
2022 — Master of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa

Hao Zhou is a filmmaker from southwest China. Zhou’s films often center on characters seeking joy despite structural oppression and have been screened at the Berlinale, Hong Kong, Sarajevo, Frameline, BFI Flare and other international festivals.

Zhou’s first feature film, “The Night,” premiered at the 64th Berlinale and won the Critics’ Prize at Black Movie (Geneva, Switzerland). In 2021, Zhou’s short film “Frozen Out” won a Gold Medal at the 48th Student Academy Awards and was selected by the British Council’s Five Films For Freedom, a global LGBTQ+ rights campaign.

An alum of Cannes’ Résidence, Berlinale Talents, and Talents Tokyo, Zhou has make work with support from Firelight Media, the Iowa Arts Council, Talents Tokyo/TOKYO FILMeX, Art With Impact, and the University Film & Video Association among other organizations.