Three Fresno Pacific University faculty participate in national summer academic programs

Three Fresno Pacific University faculty members will sharpen their academic chops this summer at scholarly seminars sponsored by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC).

This much participation in CIC summer programs is highly unusual. “We are excited for the opportunity that these three faculty have,” said Gayle Copeland, Ph.D., provost/senior vice president for academic affairs. “I believe that each of these three faculty is deserving of this honor and that this selection is a compliment to their intellect, character and commitment to service.” 

Pamela Johnston, Ph.D., associate professor of history, will be one of 20 academics nationwide to participate in “The Ancient Greek Hero,” July 25–29, in Washington, D.C., co-sponsored by the Center for Hellenic Studies. The seminar will be led by Gregory Nagy, Ph.D., Francis Jones Professor of Classical Greek Literature and professor of comparative literature at Harvard University and director of the Center for Hellenic Studies, and Kenneth Scott Morrell, Ph.D., associate professor of Greek and Roman studies at Rhodes College. “Through close readings and discussions of translated Greek poetry, history, and philosophy, the seminar will explore what it means to be human,” according to the CIC. “The organizing principle will be the study of a model of humanity…providing participants who teach in a variety of disciplines with approaches to integrate the literature of ancient Greece into a wide range of courses.”

Rebecca McMillen, Ph.D., assistant professor and director of the art program and chair of the Division of Visual and Performing Arts, has been selected to participate in “Art and Society in Britain, Hogarth to Turner (1730-1851).” “Drawing upon innovative historical analyses, the seminar sets artistic production within a cultural and historical framework and places British art in a global context, emphasizing questions of race and empire,” according to the CIC. The seminar will be at the Yale Center for British Art in New Haven, CT, in July.

Darren Duerksen, Ph.D., associate professor and director of the intercultural and religious studies program, will be part of “Teaching Interfaith Understanding” at DePaul University June 16-20. He is one of 25 faculty members selected nationally for this event, sponsored by the CIC and Interfaith Youth Core with support from the Henry Luce Foundation. “The seminar will broaden faculty members’ knowledge and perspective to help them strengthen the teaching of interfaith understanding, develop new courses and other resources, and expand the network of faculty members who are committed to teaching this subject,” the CIC states.

The CIC is an association of 770 nonprofit independent colleges and universities and other higher education affiliates that supports college and university leadership, advances institutional excellence and enhances public understanding of independent higher education’s contributions to society. Its programs and services help institutions improve educational quality, administrative and financial performance, student outcomes and visibility. Founded in 1956, CIC is headquartered at One Dupont Circle in Washington, DC. For more information, visit



Wayne Steffen
Associate Director of Publications and Media Relations