Find information on programs, curricula, divisions, departments and faculty. Bergen offers more than 120 degree and certificate programs; all classes are taught by faculty experts dedicated to assisting students succeed as they pursue lifelong learning.
Seamus A. Gibbons
Title: Assistant Professor of English/ Director of Honors
Biography: Seamus Gibbons is an Assistant Professor for Composition and Literature. Since 2015, he has served as the Composition and Literature Coordinator. In 2016 he also became the Director of the Judith K. Winn School of Honors. In addition to teaching Composition I and II, and various Literature courses, Professor Gibbons’ area of specialty is in Creative Writing, where he has designed the college’s Fiction Writing and Playwriting courses. His current projects are a collection of short stories, one appearing in last year’s Westchester Review and on two plays. Professor Gibbons began teaching at Bergen in 2009.
Dr. Alan Kaufman
Title: Professor of English
Biography: Alan Kaufman, Professor of Literature and Composition. He holds a Ph. D. in American Studies and English, with a minor in Composition Theory, from Indiana University (1982). He joined the BCC faculty in September 1989. He has been the Chairperson of the college’s Faculty Senate since 2006. In his capacity as a faculty member, Dr. Kaufman served for two terms, totaling five years, as the Director of the college’s Honors Program. He also served two terms as Director of the Composition/Literature Program. He has in addition been a Coordinator of the Faculty Development Program and served briefly as advisor to the “Torch,” the student newspaper.
Dr. Kaufman has been involved in the work of the Honors Program for about 25 years. During that time he has taught Honors courses in American and World Literature, American Ethnic Literature, and Introduction to the Novel, and also in English Composition I and II.
Dr. Kaufman also serves as Secretary of the Bergen Community College Faculty Association (BCCFA) and, at the state-wide level, is the Chair of the New Jersey Education Association’s (NJEA) Higher Education Committee.
Dr. Maria Makowiecka
Title: Professor of English
Education: M.A., English, Warsaw University, Poland (Degree 1984) D.E.A., English Literature and Culture, Paris University, France (Degree 1986) Ph.D., Comparative Literature, Graduate Center of the City University of New York (Degree 1996)
Biography: I started working at Bergen Community College in 2000 and have taught courses in composition and literature. As a Coordinator of the Women’s Studies Program, I conducted a series of seminars, sponsored by the Office of Academic Affairs. Since 2007, I have served as the Honors Program Co-Director with a focus on further building the program, reaching out to the NJ Stars students, adding new courses and working closely with the Honors Association. I was awarded a Princeton Mid-career Fellowship in 2005-2006 and I have received awards from The Office of Student Life for continued support of its activities. My academic career involves publications in comparative literature, modernist and contemporary Polish art, gender issues and women’s writing. Recently, my article on “The Fabric of Memory: Ewa Kuryluk Textile and Textual (Self-) Representations” appeared in “Poles Apart: Women in Modern Polish Culture,” edited by Helena Goscilo and Beth Holmgren, and I authored a book titled “The Theme of Departure in Women’s Travel Narratives 1600-1900: Taking a Leave of Oneself.” 2016 NISOD Excellence Award recipient.
Professor Gregg Biermann
Title: Professor of Visual Art and Cinema Studies
Office: West Hall 313|
Education: M.F.A., The San Francisco Art Institute
Biography: Professor Biermann has been on the full time faculty at Bergen since 1998, and teaches the history and analysis of cinema. He has also taught part-time at NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Professor Biermann is a film, video and multi-media artist whose work takes advantage of digital technologies to advance rigorous compositional strategies. His films and videos have been exhibited extensively in museums, galleries, film festivals and alternative spaces throughout the world and are part of the contemporary art collection of FRAC Limousin in Limoges, France. Professor Biermann has been a visiting artist at New York University, Fordham University, Binghamton University, University of Florida, University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee, University of Rome Tor Vergata, and elsewhere. His work has been written about in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Reader, San Francisco Chronicle, Film Threat, Inside New Jersey, The Millennium Film Journal, and in Eivind Rossaak’s book Between Stillness and Motion: Film Photography and Algorithms (University of Amsterdam Press). Professor Biermann has co-published (with Sarah Markgraf) three essays (2000, 2008, 2013) in the Millennium Film Journal on seminal avant-garde filmmakers. In 2005, he was a Geraldine Dodge fellow at the Robert Flaherty Film Seminar at Vassar College, and is currently co-president of the board of directors of the New American Cinema Group/Filmmakers Cooperative in New York.
Dr. Mi Na Ahn
Title: Associate Professor of Psychology
Education: Ph.D at the University of California, Santa Barbara
Biography: Mi Na Ahn is a psychologist who has researched in the areas of social cognitive processes including attribution, counterfactual thinking, and affective responses. She received her doctorate degree at the University of California, Santa Barbara and is a co-author of a book, What Might Have Been: The Social Psychology of Counterfactual Thinking. She worked as a research analyst at Young and Rubicam, an advertising and media firm in New York City before coming to Bergen, where she is an Associate Professor. She enjoys teaching diverse student groups ranging from Honors students, international students, and the ALP students.
Dr. Anne Maganzini
Title: Professor of Psychology
Education: B.S., M.A., Ph.D., Fordham University
Biography: Anne Maganzini is Professor of Psychology and co-advisor for the Psi Beta National Psychology Honor Society chapter at Bergen Community College. She was a founding faculty coordinator of the Academic Advising Center and a former Director of the Honors Program. Her areas of specialization in psychology are developmental psychology and women’s studies. She was the recipient of a Mid-Career Fellowship at Princeton University where she studied social psychology and she was also a NISOD award winner for teaching excellence. She has taught distance learning courses at the College since 1978.
Dr. Jacqueline Behn
Title: Professor of Sociology
Education: B.A., Farleigh Dickenson U; MSW and PhD, Fordham U.
Biography: Jacqueline Behn, M.S.W., Ph.D., is a licensed social worker, former Director of the Bergen County Rape Crisis Center, Clinical/Crisis Services Coordinator at Shelter Our Sisters, Bergen County’s shelter for abused women and their children, and Psychiatric Research Social Worker at New York State Psychiatric Institute in Manhattan. She has lectured widely on sexual assault and domestic violence and is a key member of the social science faculty at Bergen Community College, teaching courses in sociology, social work, and criminology. Dr. Behn saw the culmination of years of research and questioning the validity on the F.B.I.’s Comparative Bullet Lead Analysis (CBLA) result in the F.B.I. dropping their longstanding use of this forensic tool. Dr. Behn holds the positions of Full Professor and Academic Department Chair of the Social Sciences Department. She founded and coordinated Bergen’s Associate in Science (A.S.) Degree Program in Professional Studies/Social Work Option, designed to serve as a transfer degree program into baccalaureate programs in social work and to train students for entry level positions in a variety of human and social service fields. She also initiated the highly successful Social Service Career Education Day, which brings representatives from a wide variety of social service agencies in Bergen County to discuss career opportunities with students. “To find the source of my inspiration to strive for excellence in my teaching, I have to look no further than my classrooms and the college in which I teach,” explains Dr. Behn. “Watching the students discover themselves, their communities, and their possible place in the world fuels a passion in me for my teaching that has never waned and keeps me truly excited about what I do.”
Dr. Keith Chu
Title: Associate Professor of History
Office: A-326 (Pitkin Building)
Education: BA, Rutgers University; MA, State University of New York at Stony Brook
Biography: Dr. Keith Chu is an Associate Professor of History and Geography and academic department chair. He specializes in Medieval and Early Modern European history with a particular focus on the institutions, economy, and society of England and the Low Countries. His research and teaching interests also includes early American history, history of science, and modern Germany. Professor Chu has been awarded fellowships from the Nation Endowment for the Humanities, the United States Institute of Peace, and the Goethe-Institute. He has presented papers on various aspects of historical geography for the National Council for Geographic Education. He is a recipient of the NISOD Award for excellence in teaching. Prof. Chu is currently engaged in projects involving new approaches to the study of history through digital technology. His professional affiliations include the Medieval Academy of North America, Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, and The Organization of American Historians.
Dr. Andrew Krikun
Title: Professor of Music
Education: B.A., Hunter College; M.A. University of California Los Angeles; Ph.D. New York University
Biography: Dr. Andy Krikun is Professor of Music at Bergen Community College in Paramus, New Jersey, where he teaches courses in songwriting, musicology and music business. He received his M.A. in Ethnomusicology from the University of California, Los Angeles and his Ph.D. in Music Education from New York University, where his research focused on the history of popular music education in the American community college curriculum.
His articles have appeared in the International Journal of Community Music, the Journal of Popular Music Studies, and the Journal of Historical Research in Music Education, and he has presented at international conferences including the College Music Society, the National Association for Music Education, the International Association for the Study of Popular Music and the International Society for Music Education. In 2006, he was awarded a Teaching Excellence Award from the University of Texas’s National Association for Staff and Organizational Development. He is an executive board member of the Association of Popular Music Education, a non-profit organization promoting and advancing popular music at all levels of education.
As a singer-songwriter, Dr. Krikun has maintained an active career as a performer, composer, and recording artist. His band, Andy and the Rattlesnakes, was a seminal force in the L.A. Punk/New Wave scene in the late 1970s and early 1980s. A compilation CD of the band’s recordings, Last Summer to Dance, was released in 2006 and the band is currently working on a new album. He has written music for theatre and film, including the 1996 comedy The Shot, and continues to write, perform, and record for eclectic musical projects.
Dr. Thomas La Pointe
Title: Assistant Professor of Composition and Literature
Education: B.A English, M.A. Comparative Literature, Rutgers University
Biography: Thomas La Pointe is a co-director of the Center for Peace, Justice and Reconciliation, and Assistant Professor of Literature and Composition at Bergen Community College, New Jersey. His research interests include the representation of political violence and trauma in fictional narratives and visual art, educational design for multi-lingual learners, and genocide and human rights education. He has served as a Visiting Professor at the Shanghai International Studies University, China, as a journalist and researcher at the Institute for Central American Studies, Costa Rica, and as a consultant on education to the Documentation Center of Cambodia, Phnom Penh. He is co-editor of Hidden Genocides: Power, Knowledge, and Memory.
Dr. Camelia-Manuela Lataianu
Title: Assistant Professor of Sociology
Education: Ph.D. in Sociology
Biography: Camelia-Manuela Lataianu earned her M.A. in Sociology from the University of Bucharest in Romania and her Ph.D. in Sociology from the Polish Academy of Science in Warsaw, Poland. She has taught sociology to graduate and undergraduate students in Europe (at University of Bucharest, Romania and at Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Seville, Spain) and in USA (at Estrella Mountain Community College, Arizona). Besides teaching she has a decade of experience in social research with a special focus on child and family issues. She is particularly interested in social problems related with child protection, access to education, demographic transitions and demographic policies, domestic violence, international migration, social integration of children with disabilities, gender issues, inter-ethnical relations and stereotypes, poverty etc. The results of her studies were presented at numerous international conferences. She also authored one book, and published several articles in prestigious peer reviewed journals and collective books. Camelia-Manuela Lataianu has applied her theoretical knowledge in providing social work services to at-risk groups (children in residential institutions, adoption, and foster care; immigrants and refugees; unemployed women; victims of abuse and human trafficking; delinquent minors etc.) and consulted with well-known non-governmental, governmental and international organizations such as UNICEF, International Labor Organization, International Social Service, Save the Children, Southwest Key Program. Currently she teaches sociology within the Social Sciences Department at Bergen Community College in Paramus, New Jersey. She is the Academic Advisor of the International Affairs Association, formerly known as the Model UN Club.
Dr. Michael D. Redmond
Title: Professor of Philosophy and Religion
Education: M.A., Rutgers University; Ph.D., Drew University
Biography: Though much of my educational career has been spent in administration, I have a deep and abiding interest in philosophy and religious studies, and I enjoy the classroom immensely. My early interests were principally in the philosophy of religion and in symbolic logic. Later, over time, I have become increasingly interested in political and social philosophy, particularly in regards to questions about how democratic societies can maintain social cohesion while keeping faith with diverse conceptions of the good. In the last few years, my attention has turned to the philosophy of mind, and what is sometimes referred to as the “hard problem” of consciousness. My concern here is to develop an approach to consciousness that is informed by evolutionary biology.
Dr. Geoffrey J. Sadock
Title: Professor of English
Office: L 328
Biography: English Literature has always been my main interest, although I minored in psychology and history as an undergraduate. In addition to the institutions from which I hold degrees, I have studied at Exeter College (Oxford), the University of Salzburg, Edinburgh University, and Birkbeck College (University of London). My special areas of research are: Nineteenth Century British Prose (the novel) and Poetry (Tennyson, the Pre-Raphaelites); the Celtic Revival; American Literature; and Critical Theory (aesthetics). I have over the years published on Trollope, Dickens, Pater, Mallock, Tennyson, the wines of the German-speaking countries, and Victorian Aesthetics. I came to Bergen Community College in 1972, after having taught at Fairleigh Dickinson University, in Madison. Along with Dr. Marilyn Edelstein, I founder the Honors Program, now the Judith K. Win School of Honors, in 1975. In 1991, I was awarded a post-doctoral Fellowship by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, at The Graduate Center, CUNY. In 1994 I was a Mid-Career Fellow at Princeton University. In 2015 The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and The Council for the Advancement and Support of Education named me Professor of the Year for the State of New Jersey. My mission has always been to empower undergraduates, to familiarize them with the major concepts and literary masterworks of Western Civilization, and to enable them adequately to express their thoughts and feelings. Bergen has facilitated my vocation for over 43 years. In future, I hope to write a better handbook to composition than those currently available, and studies on Rossetti, Kipling, and the poetry of the Great War.
Dr. Daniel Salerno
Title: Assistant Professor of English
Office: Pitkin L330
Education: B.A. English, Rutgers University, M.A. English, Boston University; PhD English, Boston University
Biography: My primary field of expertise is Renaissance British Literature, particularly Shakespeare, but I am also interested in medieval literature and the intersection of religion and literature more generally. I have given numerous conference papers on topics such as Shakespeare, Chaucer, and Anglo-Saxon literature, and recently published a study of religious asceticism in the play Measure for Measure. I joined the faculty at BCC in 2012.
Dr. Sarah Shurts
Title: Associate Professor of History
Office: Lyndhurst 406
Education and Biography: Sarah Shurts received her Ph.D. in Modern French History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007. She is Associate Professor of History at Bergen Community College and teaches Western Civilization, Modern European History, and Genocide and Holocaust history. Her recent publications include “Redefining the Engagé: Intellectual Identity in Fin de Siècle France” Historical Reflections/Reflexions Historiques 38, no. 3 (2012), “Resentment and the right: a twentieth-century cycle of reaction, revaluation, and retreat by the French extreme right” European History Quarterly (2013), and “Continental Collaboration: the Transition from Ultranationalism to Pan-Europeanism by the Interwar French Fascist Right” French Politics, Culture & Society (2014) and “History in Harmony: The AHA “Tuning” Project in the Community College and the Closing of the Transfer Gap” The History Teacher (2016). She is a member of the governing council of the Western Society for French History and co-editor of The Journal of the Western Society for French History, and has served on AHA’s James Harvey Robinson Prize Committee and the Tuning Committee for the past three years. She is currently writing a collection of resources for Oxford University Press to accompany a new OUP textbook, The West in Question, by Kurlander and Reiter that addresses historical thinking skills and historiography in the intro level survey course.
Dr. Kathleen Williams
Title: Associate Professor
Education: B.A., Marywood University; M.A., William Paterson University; Ph.D., Southern Illinois University
Biography: Dr. Kathleen Williams is an Associate Professor in the Communication Department. She received her B.A. in Theatre from Marywood University, a M.A. in Communication Theory from William Paterson University, and Ph.D. in Speech Communication from Southern Illinois University. Her dissertation explored the communicative dimensions of conflict between professors and students. Dr. Williams has taught full-time at St. John’s University and served on the adjunct faculty of County College of Morris, Sussex County Community College and Fairleigh Dickinson University. She has a background in theatrical productions, voice performance and competitive speaking events. Over the past few years, Dr. Williams has developed “The Speech Doctor Is In” assembly programs and workshops, which teach public speaking skills to elementary age students in an entertaining and engaging way. Dr. Williams served as the Honors Co-Director for three semesters and Chair of the Honors Recruitment Committee. She is currently a member of the Honors Advisory Committee and teaches the Honors section of COM 100 Speech Communication.