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Duren Professorship Program

Each year, Newcomb-Tulane College welcomes full-time faculty from the five undergraduate schools to apply for the William L. Duren Jr. ’26 Professorship Program. This program supports faculty activities that enrich the scope of undergraduate education within the College. It was established and endowed with a generous gift from the late William L. Duren, A&S ’26, M.A. ’28, Ph.D., LL.D. honoris causa ’59, professor emeritus of mathematics and former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Virginia. The Duren professorship has allowed faculty in a variety of disciplines to enhance their undergraduate teaching in a number of creative ways.

Click the cover to review the Duren Professorship Booklet 

About Duren

The William L. Duren '26 Professorship Program was established and endowed with a generous gift from Professor William L. Duren '26, M.A. '28, Ph.D., LL.D. honoris causa '59, professor emeritus of mathematics and former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Virginia.

The objective of the William L. Duren Jr. ‘26 Professorship Program is to support faculty activities that enrich the scope of undergraduate education in Newcomb-Tulane College. The program facilitates intellectually rewarding interactions between faculty and students, both in and out of the classroom.

Duren Professors are selected from the faculty on the basis of their commitment to undergraduate teaching and their innovative proposals. While the Duren Program allows professors the freedom and resources to explore their personal research interests in greater depth, it is primarily concerned with providing the maximum educational benefit for the students.

Duren Professors may:

  • Arrange for supplemental experiences beyond the classroom that extend and enrich the formal classroom experience: field work, concert series, lecture series, travel to local archival collections or museums to consult primary materials, etc.
  • Adopt a multidisciplinary approach, which may or may not involve team teaching
  • Offer courses of a generalist rather than a highly discipline-specific type: for example, a general “modes of inquiry” approach or an approach that addresses fundamental, global questions across a range of disciplines
  • Offer courses that demonstrate the applications and extensions of their previous research to new intellectual problems
  • Offer courses that involve an unusual and distinctive pedagogy or an experiential component for which additional resources might be required

Duren Professors also serve on the Newcomb-Tulane College Grant Committee and participate in student engagement activities run by the College; additional details and dates will be provided in the appointment letter.

How to Apply

The Duren Professorship Program is administered by Newcomb-Tulane College. Prospective Duren professors may submit a proposal via email to NTC’s Director of Academic Programs. 

The proposal should include: 

  • Your department, email address, mailing address, and telephone number
  • A brief but precise description as to what activities you intend to undertake as a Duren Professor and how the proposed activities fulfill special objectives
  • A budget explaining how the $5,000 in program funds will be used,emphasizing how the expenditures fulfill the objectives of the program and facilitate worthwhile educational activity that would not otherwise be possible.

The prospective Duren Professor’s department chair is required to approve your participation in the program, to ensure that it is consistent with regular departmental activity.

Please contact Allison Cruz, NTC’s Assistant Deand and Executive Director of Academic Enrichment, at acruz5@tulane.edu or 504-314-2801 with any questions.

2022-2023 Application Timeline
  • August 25th, 2021: Applications open for 2022-2023 cohort
  • September 17th, 2021: Faculty proposals due
  • September 20th - October 1st, 2021: Duren Committee review period
  • October 4th, 2021: 2022-2023 Duren Professors announced 
  • October 4th - October 11th, 2021: Contracts are collected
Terms and Conditions of Appointment

Each year, three members of the faculty may serve as Duren Professors. The term of service is normally one year but it may be renewed. Duren Professors are selected by a committee consisting of the dean of Newcomb-Tulane College and other members of the college community. Each Duren Professor is provided with a $5,000 stipend plus up to $5,000 in funding.

Over the course of their term, Duren Professors teach at least one course that utilizes the resources provided by the Duren Program. 

Duren courses may be offered in the fall and/or spring semester. A Duren course may be a regular course offering that offers supplemental programming, or a special topics course that falls outside the regular curriculum. In order to permit the latter option, Duren Professors may use some of their funding to secure partial release from departmental teaching duties, if they so choose. Duren Professors are encouraged to offer courses that can be incorporated into regular departmental offerings so that they may fulfill major requirements.


Current Duren Professors (2021-2022)

Dr. Michelle Foa and Dr. Michael Kuczynski, Departments of Art History and English, "Paper: Culture, History, and the Digital Age"
Foa Headshot
Kuczynski Headshot

This course is an interdisciplinary undergraduate seminar, cross-listed in Art History and English, that examines the global history of paper, its impact on art, literature, and other forms of cultural production in different periods and places around the world, and some of the effects of the digital revolution on art viewing, reading, writing, and thinking.

Dr. Jordan Karubian, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, "Sustainable Solutions"
Dr. Jordan Karubian Headshot

This course is an entry level course to be offered by the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and cross-listed and co-opted by multiple departments and programs across the university focused on interdisciplinary approaches to understanding socioenvironmental feedbacks and hands-on, experiential learning techniques.

Dr. John “Ray” Proctor, Theatre and Dance, "African American Theatre History"
Dr. John “Ray” Proctor Headshot

This course is a chronological examination of African-American theater history from 1841 to the present through the study of African-American plays and playwrights, critical race theory, as well as political/social conditions in the United States. Duren funds will be used in this course to bring in weekly guest speakers from all over the country, including black writers, playwrights, film and stage directors, and stage craft designers.