McCarthy Center Faculty Scholars

The McCarthy Center Faculty Scholar Initiative, launched in fall 2021, is designed to strengthen the Leo T. McCarthy Center’s (LTMC) connections with faculty, ensure that the Center’s mission and values inform university-wide commitments, enhance the culture of community-engaged teaching and research at USF, and disseminate scholarship of engagement from USF to the broader higher education field. Faculty Scholars commit to the following over a two year period:

  • Contribute to professional development offerings for faculty organized by McCarthy staff, leveraging their expertise and experience with community engagement
  • Develop (or co-develop) one scholarly article or presentation that highlights their community-engaged work and share it through journals and/or conferences focused on community engagement 
  • Contribute at least one blog post to the McCarthy Center blog to promote and celebrate their community-engaged partnerships and projects
  • Seek opportunities to promote the mission, values, and work of the McCarthy Center in academic spaces at USF
  • Keep McCarthy Center staff informed of policies, practices, and developments at the university that are relevant to the McCarthy Center’s work
  • Join the University Council on Community Engagement

Selection of Faculty Scholars

Scholars are selected through an internal decision-making process among McCarthy Center directors, and will serve a term of two years. To be eligible to be a McCarthy Center Faculty Scholar, candidates must:

  • Currently hold a FT faculty position at USF
  • Be on tenure track or in a term position
  • Have at least 3-5 years of community-engaged teaching and/or research experience
  • Value and support the mission-driven work of the McCarthy Center
  • Be willing to meet the expectations outlined above for the role

Incentives and Compensation for Faculty Scholars

  • $1,000 honorarium/year for 2 years upon completion of each academic year 
  • Subsidy for participation in one conference focused in the community engagement field, including registration, hotel, and airfare up to $1,500
  • Access to McCarthy Center staff support or collaboration on scholarly writing or presentation projects (if desired)
  • Recognition on McCarthy Center webpage and in social media

2021-25 Faculty Scholars

David Holler

dave hollerProfessor David Holler (Department of Rhetoric and Language) has taught at USF since 2003, and he has served as the Director of the Martín–Baró Scholars Program, a living-learning community for first-year students, since 2012. His yearlong course, co-taught with Professor Kara Knafelc, covers five core areas, including public speaking, composition, literature, cultural diversity, and community-engaged learning. His work with his classes in community engagement has forged partnerships with Groceries for Seniors, Ella Hill Hutch Community Center, Richmond Neighborhood Center, Faithful Fools, St. Vincent de Paul, Rafael House, Rosa Parks Elementary, Buchanan YMCA, Women’s Community Clinic, USF’s own food pantry, and other organizations. Professor Holler and Professor Stephanie Sears (Sociology) co-directed the creation of Changemakers: Biographies of African Americans in San Francisco Who Made a Difference (2019). Holler also edits USF's undergraduate research journal, Writing for a Real World, featuring USF’s top-ranked research. Professor Holler earned the Distinguished Teaching Award in 2014 and the Faculty Service Learning Award in 2016.

Keith Hunter

keith hunterKeith O. Hunter is a tenured associate professor at the University of San Francisco School of Management. Before arriving at USF, he earned his Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior and Management at Carnegie Mellon University and his Master of Science in computer science at the University of Central Florida. Before joining academia, Keith served in the US Navy for six years as a propulsion engineer then worked for twelve years as a software engineer, including research and development at Sandia National Laboratories. At USF, Keith has instructed undergraduate and graduate students across multiple programs, delivering numerous courses including Management and Organizational Dynamics, Professional Power and Influence, and Leadership and Teams.

Dr. Hunter's research, teaching, and service intersect at the understanding and improvement processes that enhance human capacity and wellness, often emphasizing the impact of social structures. His most recent research projects explore the perception of network structures, planned network change, and multiple issues in experiential and community-engaged learning (CEL). Keith strives to facilitate high-value learning experiences while generating useful research findings of practical relevance.

Dr. Stephanie Sears

Stephanie SearsStephanie Sears is an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of San Francisco. She is also a faculty member in the African American Studies and Critical Diversity Studies programs. As an interdisciplinary scholar, her research examines the ways race, class, gender, sexuality, and generation intersect and interact in complex and contradictory ways, often simultaneously reproducing oppression and facilitating empowerment. These theoretical concerns and interdisciplinary approach formed the basis of her book, Imagining Black Womanhood, in which she examines how Black women and girls work with and against each other to create safe space, construct identities and empower themselves. Her current research, Dance Lessons, builds upon these interests and considers how women create and navigate “embodied freedom” practices and experiences via dance. Professor Sears teaches several courses, including Introduction to Sociology; Writing in Sociology; Sociology of Gender; African American Culture and Society; Sociology of Hip Hop; Community Organizing; and the Honors Thesis Seminar. Dr. Sears is the founding faculty director of the Esther Madriz Diversity Scholars Living-Learning Community. This social justice-themed community draws upon community-engaged learning pedagogy to critically explore diversity, inequality, and social change. She also served as a co-lead for the Black Achievement Success and Engagement (BASE) initiative. She received her BA in psychology from Stanford University, MA in Ethnic Studies from San Francisco State, and her Ph.D. from Yale University's joint program in African American Studies and Sociology.

Dr. Helen Maniates

Helen ManiatesHelen Maniates, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Teacher Education and coordinator of the Master of Arts of Teaching Reading Program in the School of Education at the University of San Francisco. As a community engaged scholar, her work addresses both “schooled” literacy and out-of-school literacy practices. She works in partnership with local community-based organizations to provide an annual summer reading program for K-8 students that addresses summer learning loss. Her research projects investigate classroom teaching at the micro-level to uncover practices that extend access, increase outcomes, and operationalize social justice principles in the elementary grades. Dr. Maniates has published several peer-reviewed articles, as well as some books, including her most recent (2021) co-authored offering through Teachers College Press, Principals as early learner leaders: Effectively supporting our youngest learners. She received her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in Language, Literacy, and Culture