Campus News

New Faculty and Staff: Welcome to Oberlin

March 22, 2013

Kevin Owens

Oberlin OnCampus features brief bios of faculty and staff members new to the campus community. New employees who have not completed the New Employee Information form that was included in their human resources packet can still submit information by sending an email to Others who want to supplement the information they have already provided may do so by e-mail. All new employees should e-mail a digital portrait-style photo to Oberlin OnCampus, or contact us to arrange to have a photo taken.

Christopher Neal Anderson
Visiting Assistant Professor of Biology
Chris Anderson is a professor of evolution and ecology, and is teaching an advanced course in invertebrate biology as well as team teaching an introductory course in genetics and ecology. Anderson earned a BS at Denison University and, in 2009, a PhD at UCLA. Prior to Oberlin, Anderson was in Mexico City working as a postdoctoral fellow at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. The last time he was at Oberlin was during his undergrad days, when his ultimate Frisbee team lost to Oberlin’s HorseCows.

Eli Cohen
Visiting Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies
Eli Cohen is teaching courses in early modern Spanish literature, history, and culture from 700-1700 CE, as well as intermediate and advanced Spanish language. Cohen’s research focuses on early modern fiction and philosophy from England and Spain, as well as work on modern accounts of the history and theory of the novel. Cohen earned a BA in anthropology and creative writing at the George Washington University and went on to earn MAs in Spanish at Middlebury College, liberal arts at St. John’s College, comparative literature at Princeton University. He earned a PhD in comparative literature at Princeton University. Prior to Oberlin, Cohen taught in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at Harvard University as a Harvard College Fellow, in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at Rider University, and in Princeton’s departments of comparative literature, English, and Spanish and Portuguese languages and cultures. Originally from western Massachusetts, Cohen says he is happy to find himself in Oberlin after living and traveling widely in the United States and abroad.

Julie Cruse
Instructional Technologist: Technology in the Arts and Peer Mentoring
Julie Cruse is spearheading Oberlin’s new digital arts mentorship program as a collaborative designer of arts curricula, and coordinator of peer mentors in media arts literacy. Cruse earned an MA in media arts and sciences at Arizona State University and an MFA in dance and technology at the Ohio State University. “My focus over the past 10 years of academic, creative, and entrepreneurial pursuits has been transdisciplinary innovation at the heart of media, arts, body, and learning for sustainable products, communities, infrastructures, and platforms,” Cruse says.

Emily Gazda
Administrative Assistant
Emily Gazda is in charge of the administrative end of three campus offices: Oberlin Center for Languages and Cultures (OCLC), the Cooper International Learning Center (CILC), and the Center for Learning, Education, and Research in the Sciences (CLEAR). Gazda graduated from Oberlin in 2012, earning a degree in Hispanic studies and mathematics. She says she is excited to return to campus as a staff member. In her free time, Gazda enjoys fencing, playing Bananagrams, and spending a lot of time at Trader Joe’s.

Casey Robards
Collaborative Pianist
Casey Robards accompanies the vocal department for lessons, recitals, master classes, and competitions. Prior to Oberlin, she worked at the Jacobs Schools of Music at Indiana University, the Indianapolis Opera, Central Michigan University, and the Broadway touring shows West Side Story and Wicked. She is currently a faculty artist at the Bay View Music Festival in northern Michigan. Robards earned a BMus, MMus, and DMA at the University of Illinois, and was a vocal piano fellow at the Tanglewood Music Festival in 2004 and 2005. Originally from Highland, Illinois, Robards currently resides in Alma, Michigan with her husband Anthony Patterson. In her free time, Robards enjoys playing golf, racquetball, basketball, and watching the NBA.

Joshua Lee Teaster
Assistant Director of Conservatory Admissions
Josh Teaster assists in planning and executing all phases of the conservatory’s admissions program of prospective student identification, selection, and recruitment. He also represents the conservatory at professional conferences, music educator trade shows, youth orchestra career days, auditions, and college fairs. Originally from Knoxville, Tennessee, Teastor studied bassoon performance for many years. He says this allowed him to develop a lifelong enjoyment of and passion for music, performing arts, and visual arts. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, kayaking, and is an avid scuba diver. He says, “Watch out scuba club!”

Marcelo D. Vinces
Director, Center for Learning, Education, and Research in the Sciences (CLEAR)
Marcelo Vinces leads the newly established Center for Learning, Education, and Research in the Sciences (CLEAR). He helps coordinate on-campus undergraduate research, trains peer mentors, and coordinates workshops for faculty. Vinces hails from New York City, where he lived after moving from Ecuador with his family of five. He went on to earn a BA in biology at Cornell University and a PhD in molecular microbiology at Tufts University. Prior to Oberlin, Vinces worked in Washington, D.C., as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology policy fellow at the National Science Foundation. In addition to the sciences, Vinces is a lover of the arts and languages.


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