Professional Studies and Fine Arts

Professional Studies and Fine Arts

New Directors and Faculty in PSFA

This fall the college welcomes two new school directors and five faculty members.

Heather Canary

Dr. Heather Canary, Director of the School of Communication

Returning to Southern California from Utah, Orange County native Dr. Heather Canary joins the School of Communication as the new director.

Canary has prepared for her new role by utilizing her past experiences. In the past, she ran a business and learned how to build and administrate. Soon after, she devoted her time to teaching and research.

“That [teaching and research] has helped me in terms of connecting with the faculty here [at SDSU] and the students, both undergraduate and graduate, supporting what they want to do, and also working with them to create a vision for the next decade,” Canary said.

By combining her industry experience and the experience she has building research collaborations and developing curriculum as a professor, Canary will serve the school in numerous ways in the coming years.

Canary will be working with faculty on collaborative changes in the future. This year, the School of Communication is focusing on innovative changes in curriculum and structurally related activities, such as student organizations, research collaborations and internships.

Sherry Ryan

Dr. Sherry Ryan, Interim Director of the School of Public Affairs

Joining the School of Public Affairs in Fall 2002, Dr. Sherry Ryan starts her fifteenth year as the school’s interim director.

In her transition from assistant professor to interim director, Ryan has found inspiration in working with faculty and students in different ways than before. She is inspired by the creativity and motivation that she has witnessed from students and faculty, which she expects may lead to greater community impact for the school

“I want to keep open, so that faculty can be creative and productive,” Ryan said. “I want students to thrive. Whatever I can do on a daily basis to keep all of those channels flowing, that’s what I feel like I am here for.”

Ryan’s focus with this new position has shifted from her own career to facilitating the SPA faculty, staff and students to be successful.

As the semester commences, Ryan is focused on finding communication mechanisms to share the expertise and scholarship of the faculty and students.

New Faculty Members

School of Communication

Matthew Savage

Matthew Savage, Ph.D. (Arizona State University, 2012)

Savage is an assistant professor whose research interests are at the intersection of health and interpersonal communication. His scholarship is conducted within the context of creating and supporting health communication campaigns aimed to deter risky behaviors among young adults. Currently, he is working to address important topics including adolescent bullying/cyberbullying, dangerous drinking behavior and intimate partner violence. His teaching philosophy focuses on participatory engagement, the importance of establishing the relevance of course material to real-world experiences and challenging students to exceed their expectations.

School of Music and Dance

Chuyun Oh

Chuyun Oh, Ph.D. (University of Texas, 2015)

Oh, a performance studies scholar and an international award-winning dancer, is joining the school as an assistant professor of dance. As a Fulbright scholar, Oh focuses on the construction of race, gender, sexuality, and postcoloniality in transnational performance. Her work has appeared in several journals and anthologies.

School of Public Affairs

Roddrick Colvin

Roddrick Colvin, Ph.D. (University of Albany, 2002)

Interested in public sector employment issues and with previous experience in numerous levels of government, Colvin joins the school as an associate professor in public administration. He will teach courses in public administration and criminal justice. His current research interests include; public employment equity, police officers’ shared perceptions and decision-making, and lesbian and gay civil rights. Colvin is also the author of the book “Gay and Lesbian Cops: Diversity and Effective Policing.

David Jancsics

David Jancsics, Ph.D. (City University of New York, 2013)

Jancsics is a corruption scholar that focuses on border corruption on the U.S.-Mexico border. He is joining the school as an assistant professor of public administration at the Imperial Valley Campus. His general fields of interest are public management, organizational theory and economic sociology. The more specific areas of his research involve corruption, white-collar crime and informal practices. In 2014, one of his co-authored papers on organizational corruption was selected as the winner of the Best Article Award of the Public and Nonprofit Division of the Academy of Management.

David Kanaan

David Kanaan, Ph.D. (University of Central Florida, 2016)

Kanaan is an assistant professor in Public Administration with interests in community social environmental factors and government policy effectiveness. Currently, David uses a variety of methodology including structural equation modeling to examine community-based public high school performance factors as well as municipal economic development corporation effectiveness. He is a managing editor with Public Administration Review and has presented his research at conferences including the American Society for Public Administration and Urban Affairs Association. He will teach at the Imperial Valley Campus.

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