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Humanities Edge Undergraduate Research Symposium | Fall 2021

Humanities Edge Undergraduate Research Symposium - Faculty Mentors

Faculty Mentors
Kristin Borgwald
Arts and Philosophy, Wolfson Campus
John Frazier
Arts and Philosophy, Kendall Campus
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Kristin Borgwald has been teaching philosophy for the Wolfson Campus Arts & Philosophy Department for over ten years. Her philosophical interests include normative ethics, applied ethics, social and political philosophy, and feminist theory. She studied social science and philosophy as an undergraduate at Webster University, and earned her PhD in philosophy from the University of Miami. Her research focuses on normative sentimentalist ethics, particularly care ethics. Her article, “Women’s Anger, Epistemic Personhood, and Self-Respect…” was published in Philosophical Studies in 2012. Borgwald’s interdisciplinary background influences her research and teaching. In 2013, she co-authored an article concerning the ethics of bullying, “Bullying the Bully: Why Zero-Tolerance Policies Get a Failing Grade,” in the journal Social Influence. The work concerns how we ought to treat those who bully and critiques the current trends from a sentimentalist perspective. She has represented MDC at two AAC&U summer institutes and the Aspen Institute Undergraduate Consortium. She is also a TEAGLE Fellow for the MDC grant, Contextualizing Liberal Education for Applied Reasoning.

John Frazier is a renowned non-Western cultural expert who has consulted with the United Nations, UNICEF, Louvre Museum, Walt Disney Company, U.S. Department of Education and numerous universities. "Frazier" has traveled the world working with disenfranchised populations and helping people educate their youth, including the Baka Pygmies of Central Africa, Ibo of Nigeria, Sudanese refugees in Chad and Kenya, Rwandan orphans in Kenya, Vodou practitioners in Haiti, and Mexican street artists. Professor Frazier's educational programs have served more than 2 million children, 65,000 teachers, and 15,000 refugees. Frazier has received numerous awards, including four American Museum Association excellence awards, three "Best Practices in Education" awards, three nominations for local educational Emmy's, Colonel Mitchell Wolfson, Sr. Endowed Teaching Chair, and curriculum-writing awards from the U.S. Department of Education and United Nations, For his contributions to humanity, former U.S. President Obama honored John Frazier with a Lifetime President's Volunteer Service Award in 2016.
Alicia Garcia
Arts and Philosophy, Padrón Campus
Taurie Gittings Wheeler
Arts and Letters, West Campus
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Alicia K. Garcia is a linguist, professor, performer, and writer. She teaches in the Communication, Arts & Philosophy department at Padron Campus. She has been acting and improvising since 2011, and has performed for fundraisers at both West and Padron Campuses with her team, Society Circus Players. She has taught, performed, and written for the Clowns, as well as for Front Yard Theater Collective. She is also a founding member of Femuscripts, a production company focusing on producing the work of female, female-identifying and non-binary playwrights in South Florida. Her short fiction appears in Unstamatic magazine and East by Northeast Literary Magazine. Taurie Gittings-Wheeler is an Associate Professor at West Campus. A student of the arts since middle school and a graduate of New World School of the Arts, she is an artisan, performer, and educator with over 20 years of experience. In addition to her degree in Theatre from Florida A&M University, she holds two master’s degrees: one in Interdisciplinary Arts from Nova Southeastern University and an additional one in Art & Visual Media from Tiffin University. She teaches Humanities, Cinema, Art, and Theatre Appreciation courses. As the MDC Online Faculty Developer for two courses, Art and Theatre Appreciation, and Faculty Lead for The Humanities Edge grant, she's committed to bringing the transformative power of the arts to everyone. Through global education, she aims to broaden students' perspective on the world and has taken MDC students to England, France, Italy, and Greece. Through teaching, mentoring, and service to MDC, she has implemented arts-infused curricular and co-curricular high impact practices to improve student achievement.
Dorienne Lewis
World Languages, Hialeah Campus
Ray Morales
Arts and Philosophy, Kendall Campus
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Dorienne Lewis holds an M.A. in English, Rhetoric, and Medieval Studies from Rutgers University. She has been teaching literature and writing classes for more than 30 years. Currently, she serves as a faculty member at MDC Hialeah where she teaches various modalities of ENC-1101 and ENC-1102. This is her first mentorship for the Humanities Edge program. In her spare time, she enjoys attending medieval and renaissance fairs in costume, making chain-maille jewelry, and spending ridculous amounts of time entertaining her gorgeous Royal Standard Poodle, the Majestic Louis-Lennon McDougal, a fifth generation AKC show dog.

Ray Morales has been an active ceramics artist and a Professor of Art at Miami Dade College for over 20 years. His expertise in the field of ceramics range from creating both functional and sculptural forms, glaze chemistry, firing kilns, and developing a range of clays. His artworks are widely sought out and are held in collections all over the world. As a professor, Ray Morales has built curriculums that attract members of the community as well as traditional students. His teaching methodology focuses on putting theory into tangible action and creative problem solving.


Yane Nemeroff
World Languages, Hialeah Campus

Alan Ngim
Arts and Philosophy, Wolfson Campus

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Yane Nemeroff is a Communications/Speech Professor at Miami Dade College: Hialeah Campus. Professor Nemeroff has been teaching at the college for over 5 years. His focus in the classroom is for students to understand the complexity in Communications. Mr. Nemeroff ultimately inspires students by deconstructing Communication, and reconstructing effective communicators. He holds a Masters degree in Communication Studies from Florida Atlantic University. Yane also earned a Bachelors degree in Intercultural and Organizational Communication from Florida Atlantic University as well. This is his first year collaborating with the Humanities Edge Undergraduate Research Mentorship Program.

Dr. Alan Ngim is a Professor in the Arts and Philosophy Department at the Wolfson campus of Miami Dade College where he has taught full-time since 2004. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, he started playing piano at age seven. He earned a bachelor's degrees with honors in piano performance, another with honors in computer science from University of California, Santa Barbara, a master's degree in piano performance and pedagogy from Northwestern University, and a doctoral degree in piano and chamber music from University of Miami, where he was awarded a University Fellowship. He also studied at the American Institute for Musical Studies in Graz, Austria. Prior to teaching full-time, Dr. Ngim worked as a full-time pianist in Miami for five years. At MDC Wolfson, Dr. Ngim teaches music theory, private piano, music appreciation, and chamber music. He conducts the orchestra for the musical theater productions each semester and performs each semester in faculty recitals. For the Honors College at Wolfson, Professor Ngim teaches music appreciation and first-year leadership seminar. This is his first time mentoring in the HE-URP program. Aside from academics, Dr. Ngim is interested in technology (especially A.I.), psychology, and environmental issues. He loves swimming long distances in open water, paddle boarding, and yoga.

Simeon Richardson
Social Sciences, Homestead Campus
Emily Sendin
Communications, Arts, and Philosophy, Padrón Campus
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Dr. Simeon Richardson is a Senior Associate Professor and Honor’s College Faculty Lead at Miami Dade College’s Homestead Campus where he teaches English and American History as well as African American Literature. Dr. Richardson is the 2021 Congresswoman Carrie Meek Endowed Teaching Chair, campus co-historian, UFMDC vice president, Black Male Initiative founder and advisor, and lead genocide instructor. Dr. Richardson grew up in Richmond Heights, FL, and graduated from Miami Killian Senior High. He earned a bachelor's degree in Exceptional Student Education and a master's in Reading and Language Arts from Florida Memorial University. He also earned graduate certificates in English and American History in 2015 and 2020, respectively, and a Doctorate in Higher Education Leadership from the University of Miami in 2018. At the “U” his research focused on the successes and barriers of African American college students, and his 2018 dissertation entitled “Non-Cognitive Factors that Contribute to the Black Gender Gap in Community College Persistence” has been studied by hundreds of other national and international researchers. He has been married for 19 years and has three children. In his spare time, he enjoys watching historical documentaries, disc jockeying for gatherings, playing board games, and traveling around the country.

Emily Andrea Sendin is a professor of English, literature, and creative writing with two decades of teaching experience at Miami Dade College's Eduardo J. Padrón Campus. Sendin is an Endowed Teaching Chair, Fulbright Scholar, National Council of Teachings of English Media Literacy Award recipient, and Florida Campus Contact Service-Learning Faculty of the Year. She earned a BA and MA in English with a concentration in women’s studies from Florida International University. Her areas of expertise are African American literature, post-colonialism and feminist theories, and media studies. At Miami Dade College, Sendin teaches global sustainability and Earth literacy studies, service-learning, and Honors College courses. She is the founding advisor of Urbana, the student-led, award-winning literary and arts magazine of the Padrón Campus, currently on its quinceañera volume. She is also the founding advisor of Hermione’s Army, a chapter of Fandom Forward, an international organization with a mission to use the power of story for social activism. Sendin is the cofounder of the Tengo un Sueño 17-year educational program of FNE International. Her life’s passions are books, art, traveling, teaching, writing, and service.

Brinda Surendar
Arts and Letters, West Campus
Yanely Webb
Social Sciences, Homestead Campus

Prof. Surendar teaches Composition & Writing and Literature at the West campus. Originally from India, she comes with more than 20 years of work experience in both the Corporate and the educational sectors. She has 2 Masters Degrees in English with one from her native country of India and the other from the State University of New York in Albany. Very passionate about literature, Prof. Surendar specializes in 18th century British writing and Gothic Literature. Prof. Surendar joined MDC in Jan 2017 as a full-time professor and has since then set up the English Department at MDC-West and founded Words Are Us- The Literature Club of West campus. Since its inception in Fall 2018, the Literature Club has organized several events promoting writers and iconic texts to the students of the campus. She created their signature event called the Lit Fest which is a theme-based literature festival that is open to all campuses of MDC. Eager to learn new things, you will find Prof. Surendar trying something new every semester.

Dr. Yanely Webb is a proud MDC alumna who graduated with an associate degree in elementary education. She then attended Barry University, earning a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with ESOL; Florida International University, where she earned a master’s degree in reading education; and Capella University, which awarded her a doctorate in education. Dr. Webb has been teaching at the college for the past 17 years and currently teaches writing and literature courses at the Homestead Campus. As part of her effort to expand literacy and access to quality education, in 2012, Dr. Webb founded Pages for All Ages, an after-school service-learning project that pairs MDC students with young migrant children to help them write a book of their own. The program won recognition by the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics.