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Andréanne Abbondanza-Bergeron is a sculptor and installation artist. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Master in Art Education from Concordia University. She works with various mediums including wood, metal, clay, plaster and plastic. Her art practice reflects everyday social interactions and the environment that surrounds us. Her work has been presented in galleries and public spaces in Germany, Great Britain, Spain, Belgium, the United States and Canada.
Gordon Louis Aronoff’s academic path began when he read The Odyssey of Homer in a college Humanities course. After CEGEP, he completed an undergraduate degree in Classical Studies, and then took a five year hiatus from school to play music, work with racehorses, and manage a gym. Upon returning to University, Gordon obtained a Master’s Degree in the History and Philosophy of Religion and a PhD in Religion from Concordia University. When not teaching Humanities and Religious Studies at Vanier, Gordon is an avid girevik.
Stephanie Belmer studied Liberal Arts at the University of King’s College in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and went on to do a Master’s in Art History at the Courtauld Institute of Art. There, she became interested in the relationship between aesthetics and politics, and completed a doctoral degree on the subject in the department of Social and Political Thought, at York University. Her research interests include modern and contemporary art, specifically the visual and performance arts, and critical theorists such as Walter Benjamin, Theodor Adorno and Jacques Rancière.
Kevin Bushell received his BA from The University of Western Ontario and his MA from Concordia University. He has published criticism in Studies in Canadian Literature and Don McKay: Essays On His Works (Guernica Editions, Ed. Brian Bartlett), as well as online at the popular website, Modern American Poetry. He has published poetry in numerous literary journals, including The Fiddlehead, Exile, Prairie Fire, and Prism International. In addition to poetry, his passions include soccer, drumming, and fountain pens.
Stephen Block has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. received from Concordia University and Universite de Montreal in 1991. His specialities have been in media and politics; economy and society and labour relations. He started out as a sociologist but switched to political philosophy, receiving an MA in the philosophy of the social sciences in 1985. He has taught at both University and College levels since 1985, having worked at Concordia, McMaster and McGill as well as Vanier. In his previous lifetime Stephen was a professional musician, a freelance writer and also had interests in many technical and mechanical areas, having training as a sound technician, and as an auto (and bicycle) mechanic. He still writes many freelance articles and is working on a book on the politics of public affairs, which he may finish if the government doesn’t force him to work weekends.
Timothy Budde (department of Humanities and Liberal Arts) hails from the Deep South, Atlanta, Georgia. His academic career brought him to St. Mary’s College as an undergraduate, in Moraga, California, where he studied the Great Books and philosophy. From St. Mary’s, Timothy entered the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, where he developed a taste, first, for medieval philosophy, and then for the platonic philosophy of late-antiquity known as Neoplatonism. After taking a degree in philosophy at the DSPT, Timothy moved to Toronto, where he concentrated on the philosophical translations of Dionsyius the pseudo-Areopagite made by John Scottus Eriugena. His research interests include the overlap of religious and philosophical traditions, especially those which resulted in a sort of Neoplatonic Christianity—as we find among the Cappadocian fathers, and the early Gnostics—and in a sort of Jewish Platonism—as we find among the Qumran community and the medieval Cabbalists.
“I teach the first-semester English course in Liberal Arts, which, with its emphasis on ancient literature in translation, still allows me to capitalize on my university studies in Anthropology, Classics and Archaeology. I received a B.A. and M.A. from McGill University, Montreal. My Master’s thesis was on Roman coinage from the Middle East. From there, I continued at McMaster University, Hamilton, where I earned a Ph.D. in Classics [Thesis title: “Studies in the Representation of Dwarfs in Hellenistic and Roman Art”]. I spent an exchange year in Tübingen, Germany, and continue to keep up with German and with the friends whom I made there. Although I enjoy historical linguistics and languages in general, ironically I have no natural aptitude for any language except English. Indeed, I branched into teaching English in order to indulge my love of correcting other people’s spelling and grammar — and having a built-in excuse to do it.”
Jailson Lima teaches History and Methodology of Science in the Liberal Arts Program. He holds a B.S. in Chemistry and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Inorganic Photochemistry from the University of São Paulo, Brazil. Part of his doctoral research took place in Clemson, South Carolina, where the natives taught him that any food, including tomatoes and ice cream, tastes better after being deep fried. In Brazil, he taught Chemistry at the high-school, college and university levels. He moved to Canada in 2000 and has been teaching at Vanier since then. His research interests include the development of instructional materials to foster creativity and imagination in the teaching of the Sciences. He is an avid reader with many interests such as History, Archaeology, Science Fiction, movies and music. He believes that there are only two important things in life: One is education, and the other is not that important. Being Brazilian, he knows that soccer is much more than just a game—it is a metaphor of life.
Sevak Manjikian teaches Religious Studies (Mythology) and Humanities (Ethics) in the Liberal Arts Program. He has been a member of the program since 2000. Growing up in Saudi Arabia, Sevak was surrounded by the rich textures of Islam and this subject would become his area of academic specialization. Sevak has a Bachelor’s degree in Religious Studies from Queen’s University and a Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Islamic Studies from McGill University. Apart from his academic pursuits, Sevak is an avid cyclist, tennis player and skier.
Maggie McDonnell teaches the third English course in Liberal Arts, Alternative Traditions. Maggie discovered her love of literature as a student at Vanier College, and went on to complete a Master’s in Literature at Concordia University before returning to Vanier on the other side of the desk. She also holds a Diploma in College Teaching from the Universite de Sherbrooke, and is completing research towards a Master’s in Education.
Maggie’s interests in the field of education include assessment as a learning tool and interdisciplinary studies; her interests in literature are wide and varied. Other distractions include her children, her kitchen, and her scuba adventures.
A teacher at Vanier College since 2002, Stephen Newbigging received his Masters of Mathematics degree from McMaster University in 1998. He continues to be fascinated by the omnipresence of simple mathematics in world around us. He spends his spare moments in the woods, skiing, camping or canoeing as the season permits.
Ljiljana (Lili) Petrovic has been teaching at Vanier College since 2001, offering courses in Humanities, Liberal Arts, Philosophy, and Slavic Studies. She holds a Ph.D in Philosophy from the Université de Montréal, where she focused on the question of humanitarian intervention and cosmopolitanism. Dr. Petrovic convened a conference at Vanier College on Humanitarian Intervention in 2009 and continues to focus on political philosophy, specifically international law and military intervention.