Meet the Faculty

David Winzenz, Professor, Department of Psychology, Ph.D. Stanford University

I joined GST early in my teaching career and have stayed in the program because it fosters very exciting teaching and learning. The students are great, the curriculum is enormously rich and the other teachers are wonderful to work with. I do the social studies and am able to weave psychology, from brain anatomy to Freud, into a fascinating year-long course using case studies of intriguing pathologies of the mind.

Tricia Sweet, Lecturer, M.A.in English, California State Univesity Chico, Ph. D Program in English, UC Davis.

When John Keats, son of a groom, got hold of a good English translation of Homer's epics by George Chapman, he wrote a poem about the thrill of discovering world-changing literature:

            On First Looking into Chapman's Homer

Much have I traveled in the realms of gold,
And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;
Round many western islands have I been
Which bards in fealty to Apollo hold.
Oft of one wide expanse had I been told
That deep-browed Homer ruled as his demesne;
Yet did I never breathe its pure serene
Till I heard Chapman speak out loud and bold:
Then felt I like some watcher of the skies
When a new planet swims into his ken;
Or like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes
He stared at the Pacific -- and all his men
Looked at each other with a wild surmise --
Silent, upon a peak in Darien.

It matter not that it was Balboa, not Cortes, who saw the Pacific from Darien, Panama.   Without all of the facts and without a thorough knowledge of Greek, Keats wonderfully expresses his joy in reading.   I teach literature and composition so that I can share this pleasure with students.   At GST, we read and argue about some of the best literature through the ages and today.   I love working with students to develop multiple interpretations of texts that abound in meanings, foreign and familiar to our own lives.

Kirk Monfort, Professor, Department of Philosophy, Ph.D Stanford University

"This was great! I wish I had had a freshman year like this," I said to myself after my first year teaching in GST. Thirty years, nine hundred students, and a dozen different faculty colleagues later, I still think the same thing. As the GST historian I am very interested in your exploring with me the question of how we came to live the way we do with the attitudes and aspirations we have here at the beginning of the third millennium. As the philosophy teacher I want to prompt you to undertake a life-long examination of your own life, attitudes and aspirations and see if Socrates was correct in claiming that only examined lives are worth living. Note that none of the great spiritual traditions, which are thought to have something important to say about human happiness, have suggested that it is to be found "getting and spending."

Robert Herhusky, Assistant Professor, Department of Art, MFA California College of Arts and Crafts.

I joined the GST faculty ten years ago. The GST art studio offers a tremendous opportunity to work in a variety of media with students from diverse and varied backgrounds. We try to gear the studio material to whatever historical era we are currently covering. My colleagues offer tremendous help and latitude toward making the art material integrate with their course material.

My background and interest is in studio art. I am moved by the heartfelt belief that we can make extraordinary things even if we don't have the talents of Michaelangelo, Rembrandt, and Carravaggio. We'll try drawing, painting, sculpture, woodworking, whatever it takes to exercise the creative muscles that are often quite atrophied in college freshmen.

Lynda Klein, Lecturer, Department of Physics, M.S. University of Cincinnati

I have two ways of describing science component of GST. Here is the SHORT version:

Confucius would probably have enjoyed the GST science program, which is modeled after his core teaching philosophy: "Tell me, I forget; show me, I remember; involve me, I understand."

Here is the LONG version:

Some of the science activities that GST students participate in while learning astronomy and physics are:

  • observing stars and constellations to become well-acquainted with the night time sky
  • recreating experiments performed by ancient astronomers to calculate the radius of earth
  • building a sundial and plotting the path of the sun to appreciate the way Babylonians viewed the sun
  • recording the movement of Ursa Major to determine the rotation and revolution periods of Earth
  • planning a trip to Jupiter's moon Io by designing a futuristic travel brochure
  • applying energy conservation laws to the flight of bottle rockets that we build and launch
  • studying heat transfer and pressure differences while building and racing steam boats
  • applying the principles of celestial navigation to a simulation of a Viking voyage that led to the discovery of North America
  • practicing Newton's laws through firing cannons
  • seeing how Kepler's laws can be used to calculate the orbital period of comets
  • comparing the size of the solar system to the size of an atom by creatingscale models of planets and sub-atomic particles
  • discovering the source of the molecules in your body while studying stellar evolution
  • determining the age of the Universe by measuring the Doppler shift of Quasars
 

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Kirk Monfort
kmonfort@csuchico.edu

California State University, Chico
Chico, CA 95929
(530) 898-6663

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