Hobart and William Smith Colleges - Kenyon and Monson Earn Endowed Professorships
The HWS Update
Monson Kenyon

Kenyon and Monson Earn Endowed Professorships

This year, two outstanding HWS faculty members have been selected as recipients of endowed professorships. Created and supported through the generosity of numerous alumni, alumnae and friends, these awards underwrite the work of faculty in recognition of exceptional teaching and research. The funding supports increased opportunities and resources for scholarship and academic initiatives.

This year’s recipients, Professor of Biology Kristy Kenyon and Professor of Sociology Renee Monson, were selected following nominations and review by colleagues and a recommendation by President Joyce P. Jacobsen and Provost Mary L. Coffey to the Board of Trustees.

“Professor Kenyon and Professor Monson are impressive scholars and teachers, and I am thrilled that Hobart and William Smith can recognize and encourage their work in this way,” says Provost and Dean of Faculty Mary Coffey. “Thanks to the generous support of donors, the endowed funds provide our professors with the time and freedom to make new strides in their research and on behalf of student learning.”

Kenyon, the 2020-2025 Philip J. Moorad and Margaret N. Moorad Professor in the Sciences, has focused her research and teaching in the areas of developmental biology, neuroscience and STEM education. Her investigations center on the role of transcriptional regulation in the development of the nervous system with a particular focus on the visual systems of both vertebrates (African clawed frog) and invertebrates (fruit fly). Her scholarship has been published in peer-reviewed journals including BioScience, Developmental Biology, Developmental Cell and the Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education. Kenyon, who joined faculty in 2003, holds a Ph.D. from the George Washington University and a B.A. from Colgate University. She serves as faculty athletic fellow for the William Smith lacrosse team.

Monson, the 2020-25 Joseph P. DiGangi Professor, studies how gender relations, families, national politics and social policy intersect in society. She has conducted research on student learning outcomes, family patterns and election outcomes, and on the effects of U.S. welfare reform and child support policies. Her work has been published in peer-reviewed journals and anthologies, including Teaching Sociology, International Social Science Review, Gender & Society and Work, Welfare, and Politics in the Wake of ReformMaking Men Into Fathers: Men, Masculinities and the Social Politics of Fatherhood. A member of the faculty since 1998, Monson received the HWS Faculty Prize for excellence in teaching in 2010. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, an M.A. from the University of Minnesota and a B.A. from Oberlin College.

In addition to their collaborative research with colleagues in their respective fields, Kenyon and Monson have published two articles on the role of disciplines in interdisciplinary curricula, drawing on their experiences co-teaching a bi-disciplinary course at HWS, “The Politics of Reproduction.”

Learn more about the endowed professorships at HWS.

Dr. Philip J. Moorad ’28 cherished his experiences at Hobart College so much that, when he passed away in 1998, his wife and sons established the Philip J. Moorad ’28 and Margaret N. Moorad Professorship in the Sciences, which honors faculty members who are committed to their communities and to learning.

 Inspired by the dedication of Professor Emeritus Joseph P. DiGangi, a member of the political science faculty and pre-law adviser at the Colleges from 1967 to 1997, HWS Trustee Dr. Richard L. Wasserman ’70, former HWS Trustee Arthur R. Medici ’71, the late former Trustee Paul F. Colarulli ’72 and many other alums endowed a professorship honoring the memorable and influential professor.

The photo above features Professor of Biology Kristy Kenyon (left) and Professor of Sociology Renee Monson (right).