Edward Hums is one of Notre Dame’s most beloved faculty member. Known for being spotted in the dining hall or attending dorm Masses with his wonderful wife, Shirley, he demonstrates a particular care and concern for his students. In addition to being a friendly and active member of the Notre Dame community, Prof. Hums is a brilliant professor. To enjoy the intersection between a wonderful human being and a phenomenal professor, take his section of “Accountancy I.”

Professor recommendations, Fall 2018

American Studies

Kathleen Cummings’ research focuses on the intersections between gender, Catholicism, and American culture. In pursuit of these interests, she has written numerous books and is frequently cited in news media. For students who want to know more about the historic and continuing impact of Catholicism in American society, Prof. Cumming’s course “Catholics in America” is for you!


Art History

Marius Hauknes will be teaching “Art & Architecture of the Medieval World.” A specialist in Medieval Mosaics, Professor Hauknes provides expert analysis of the pivotal works of art and architecture during the Medieval Era. This course not only examines these works of art, but also includes the historical events that lead to such works. This course is perfect for those seeking to fulfill an Art History or Medieval Studies requirement while learning about the culture heritage of the Church.

Catherine Kupiec specializes in Italian art of the fourteenth to sixteenth centuries, with a focus on sculpture. In her course “Art of the High Renaissance in Florence and Rome,” will study the masterful art of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Bramante, and Raphael, while considering the historical context in which these artists worked. Professor Kupiec lectures in a lively manner, always guiding her students to participate in class discussion and to support their analysis of art with specific details and close observation.



Adrian Rocha is genuinely committed to seeing his students succeed, and years of incorporating student feedback have made his class “General Ecology” interesting and engaging even for students without an incoming interest in ecology. Note: This course is a requirement for the Environmental Science and Biology majors, but the lab is only required for ES majors. If you are a Biology major not interested in studying ecology after graduation, then the Rover recommends considering taking a different elective lab, as the lab associated with this course is known for being highly demanding, requiring several all-day weekend trips throughout the semester.



Brian Krostenko will be teaching “Reading and Writing Latin Prose.” The course aims to help students with Latin composition in order to read more effectively. Students will also discuss the history of semantics and syntax as well as stylistic analysis. As a professor, Krostenko lectures in an engaging and often humorous manner, guiding students to think through the material on their own. His research interests include the rhetoric and linguistics of the Late Roman Republic.

Robin Rhodes is an archaeologist and art historian who specializes in classical art and architecture. He wrote “Architecture and Meaning on the Athenian Acropolis.” For anyone interested in classics or history, Rhodes does a great job explaining the rich cultural backgrounds for ancient art and architecture. “Greek Art & Architecture” analyzes the development of Greek architecture, painting, and sculpture from eighth to second centuries B.C.

Catherine Schlegel will be teaching “Greek and Roman Epic Poetry,” an advanced literature course exploring the cultural contexts and immortal aesthetic power of The Illiad, The Odyssey, The Aeneid, and the Metamorphoses.  Her cynical, frank humor, endearing bluntness, and tendency to invite classes to brunch at her house makes her an excellent choice in professor.  Don’t miss this opportunity to fulfill your university literature requirement, immerse yourself in the genius of the ancients, and gain a new role model for your life.



Yasmin Solomonescu will be teaching a course called Lord Byron & Percy Shelley,” in which students will explore perceptions of the two writers’ works and attitudes from the 19th century to the present.  In their time, Byron and Shelley were seen as threats to contemporaneous mores because of their unconventional political and social beliefs.  Students will read lyric poetry, epics, mock epics, protest poems, satires, selections from the poets’ essay and letters, and reviews and criticism of their work. This course will involve a twenty page research paper, but don’t let that stop you from learning about these bold poets, who were described as “mad, bad, and dangerous to know.”



Carl Ackermann is well-decorated, with several awards for his excellence in teaching, including a 2012 recognition as one of the ten best business professors in the nation. He matches his area of expertise—mutual funds, hedge funds, and personal finance—with a dedication for service for those in poverty, and a fervor to prepare Notre Dame students for financial success post-graduation. Next semester, he will be teaching “Corporate Financial Management,” which is required for finance majors and is cross-listed with business administration.



Fr. Wilson Miscamble, a Rover advisor, will be teaching “Making Australia.” This course will be on the nation-building process of Australia. Students will consider the major issues of Australian history, beginning with Aboriginal history and finishing with present debates on Australian identity. Students taking the course will also have opportunities to explore topics in settings outside the classroom. The course is highly recommended for those planning to study abroad in Australia. Fr. Miscamble’s research interests include recent U.S. political and diplomatic history. Students appreciate his sense of humor and knowledge of Australian history. He is also known for taking his students out to lunch.



Kathleen Boyle will be teaching “Genesis of the Italian American Identity.” This 2xxxx level serves as an engaging and enjoyable way to simultaneously learn about the history of Italian-American culture in the United States and fulfill a social science or Italian requirement. Of particular note is the course’s focus on the role of the Catholic faith in the lives of the early Italian-Americans. Highly recommended for those with Italian heritage or those simply seeking to learn more about this facet of American history and culture.

As one of the leading experts on Dante’s Divine Comedy, Zygmunt Baranski, or otherwise endearingly called Zyg, makes this 14th century poem. As the course title, “Dante’s Divine Comedy: The Christian Universe as Poetry,” suggests, this class extends a particular focus on how this literary work expresses and simultaneously teaches the Christian understanding of Hell, Purgatory, and Heaven. For the first time, this class is cross listed with Theology as well as Italian, Literature, and Medieval Studies.

The Rover also recommends Christian Moevs’ class on Medieval-Renaissance Italian Lit & Culture. Taught in Italian, the class provides a survey of the most influential works of literature, poetry, architecture, and art in Italy during the Medieval/Renaissance period.



Laura Hollis is a Rover faculty advisor and a captivating professor with interests ranging from law to entrepreneurship to public policy. Business students looking for a professor with an expansive interdisciplinary knowledge can take her “Introduction to Entrepreneurship,” “Management Competencies,” or “Business Law.”


Program of Liberal Studies

Matthew Capdevielle will be teaching the Great Books Seminar II. This course, one of the requirements of the PLS curriculum, covers books from Roman philosophy to Christian antiquity. Prof. Capdevielle, who also serves as Director of the University Writing Center, is an engaging professor and will be particularly helpful for PLS students looking to strengthen their writing style and process.

Elizabeth Capdevielle specializes in the rhetoric of religious and secular literature of the Middle Ages—the same kinds of literature which PLS students will encounter in her section of the Great Book Seminar III! Prof. Capdevielle’s class is particularly recommended for PLS students interested in rhetorical analysis of the great works of Western Civilization.


Political Science

Mary Keys will be teaching “Politics and Conscience.” The course is an inquiry into the role conscience and the individual human person play in citizenship, civil disobedience, political leadership, and related topics. Both the Catholic intellectual tradition and other writers of the history of ethical-political thought will be studied. Professor Keys specializes in Christianity, political thought, and ethics.

Patrick Deneen is an associate professor for the Constitutional Studies department and specializes in the history of political thought, American political thought, and religion and politics. He has recently received attention for his latest book, Why Liberalism Failed. He will be teaching “Junior Seminar: Tocqueville Democracy in America.” This course will read the entirety of Alexander de Tocqueville’s famed, Democracy in America, a frenchman’s observations of American society and democracy in its infancy.

In Vincent Phillip Munoz’s “Senior Seminar: Human Excellence in the Political Order,” Prof. Munoz, a Rover faculty advisor, will lead his students in an exploration of the question of the best and most virtuous life. The class will include readings on political life, relationships, morals, leadership, femininity, and masculinity. As an associate professor and the director of the Constitutional Studies department, Prof. Munoz always pushes his students to pursue excellence, values all viewpoints at the table, and never fails to lead contentious seminar discussions.



David Cory will offer the course “Introduction to Philosophy,” which will explore perennial problems such as the existence of God, human freedom, and moral obligation. His research focuses on the history of medieval philosophy and science, especially questions of causality in the thought of Thomas Aquinas.

John O’Callaghan, director of the Jacques Maritain Center, will be teaching “Aquinas on God.” O’Callaghan is an expert on Aquinas, and brings humor, intelligence, and a great taste in Classic Rock to his classes.

Ryan Madison’s course, “Ethics,” will deal with controversial issues such as abortion, euthanasia, the treatment, of animals, and poverty. It will also discuss if there is an objective right and wrong, how to discern what is right or wrong, and if morality is grounded in God. Professor Madison is the Associate Director for the Center for Ethics and Culture and his work focuses on ancient philosophy, metaphysics, and the thought of Thomas Aquinas.

The Rover also recommends Samuel Newlands and John Betz’s “Faith and Reason, Peter Finocchiaro’s “Introduction to Philosophy,” David Squires’ “Medical Ethics,” and Sean Kelsey’s “Aristotle.”



David Fagerberg’s courses are known to be eclectic, fascinating, and theologically intriguing—just like him! While his primary academic focus is liturgical theology, Prof. Fagerberg has a particular love for C.S. Lewis, which will be showcased in his 2000-level theology course, “C.S. Lewis on Sin, Sanctification and Saints.”

Gabriel Reynolds is Notre Dame’s expert on Islamic tradition and the relationship between Christianity and Islam. For students interested in studying this relationship and looking to fulfill their second theology requirement, take “Islam and Christian Theology.” For theology majors interested in further exploring this area of interreligious study, take “Christian Muslim Relations,” which is co-taught by Mun’im Sirry.

Belonging to both the theology and art history departments, Robin Jensen entails her students with her insight into how these two disciples can harmoniously work together. Through this class, Prof. Jensen delves into the findings of her research on the Cross and its presence throughout Church History. “The Cross in the History of Christianity: Text, Arts and Tradition” will certainly satisfy those with the intellectual desire to study sacred arts role in liturgy, personal devotion, and promotion of Church teaching.

Also recommended are “Nuptial Mystery” by Timothy O’Malley,“Christian Theological Traditions I” by Rover advisor John Cavadini and “Following Jesus” by Fr. Brian Daley, SJ.