University of Florida Honors Program names 2012-13 Dunlevie Professors

Published: March 22 2012

Category:Announcements, InsideUF, Top Stories

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Three distinguished University of Florida faculty members have been appointed as Elizabeth Wood Dunlevie Honors Term Professors for the 2012-13 academic year.

Timothy Fik of the department of geography, Connie Mulligan of the department of anthropology, and Anna Peterson of the department of religion will each teach a course for the Honors Program during the fall semester.

The Elizabeth Wood Dunlevie Honors Term Professorships are made possible by a generous endowment gift from Elizabeth Wood Dunlevie, a UF graduate. The goal of the program is to encourage the most esteemed faculty at UF to participate in the University Honors Program as instructors and mentors. The endowment provides summer salary and support for the faculty members’ activities.

Fik will offer a course titled Popular Music and Culture: A Geographic Perspective. Students will examine the evolution of a lesser-known history of America from the perspective of the geographic origins and diffusion of musical genres. By the end of the course, students will understand the background and origins of the music to which they listen and the influence of music and musicians on national affairs. The course will also explore the influence of demographics, the growth of niche markets, and the overt and covert commercialization of popular music.

Mulligan’s course is titled Bioethics in Daily Life. The seminar will introduce students to bioethical issues that are encountered in everyday life through popular media. Students will gain an understanding of the scientific basis of these issues so that they may develop informed opinions. Controversial issues such as abortion, animal rights and genetic selection will be discussed, and students may have to reflect on their personal views and their rationale for holding particular opinions.

Peterson will address the relationships between humans and animals through her interdisciplinary course, Animals and Society. Students will explore how animals play central roles in virtually every human society. The course will touch on animals in literature, religion, and mythology; the changing historical importance of domesticated animals; the moral and philosophical dimensions of human-animal relations; and contemporary research on animal cognition.

Fik arrived at UF in 1989. He is a prolific researcher, having published more than three dozen refereed articles, several technical reports, and two books. His current book project is based on the material he will present in his fall course. A gifted teacher, he is consistently rated highly by students and peers alike for his engaging classes.

Mulligan has been a faculty member at UF since 1999. She is the associate chair of the department of anthropology and the associate director of the UF Genetics Institute. Her work has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. Mulligan works in the area of molecular anthropology and has developed courses in molecular genetics and evolution that address critical questions in anthropology.

Peterson joined the faculty at UF as an assistant professor in 1993. Her research focuses on human-animal interactions. Her work has been supported by the National Science Foundation, and is truly interdisciplinary in nature. Her current projects involve collaborations with faculty in veterinary medicine, wildlife ecology, and sustainability.

Dunlevie Professors are selected by Kevin Knudson, the director of the Honors Program, in consultation with a committee of UF faculty, from a pool of nominees submitted by department chairs.


Kevin Knudson,, 352-392-1519

Category:Announcements, InsideUF, Top Stories