Peace Studies Ph.D. Graduates Secure Strong Placements

Author: Hannah Heinzekehr

Members of the 2012 Ph.D. cohort from left to right: Kyle Lambelet, Karie Cross Riddle, Heather DuBois, Caleb Hamman and Francis Bonenfant-Juwong. Several members of this cohort have graduated and secured strong academic appointments.

Five recent or soon-to-be graduates from the Peace Studies Ph.D. program at the University of Notre Dame have secured strong academic placements at universities across the country.


The Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, part of the Keough School of Global Affairs, partners with Notre Dame departments to offer six distinct but related doctoral degrees. Because each is a dual degree in a traditional discipline and peace studies, Kroc Institute Ph.D. graduates are equipped for academic jobs in a wide range of areas.


“The Kroc doctoral students' performance on the job market has been phenomenal this year,” says Jason A. Springs, Associate Professor of Religion, Ethics and Peace Studies and Director of Doctoral Studies. “Our graduates have consistently performed well on the academic job market. This year’s appointments demonstrate once again that students from all of our doctoral tracks are competitive with peers in their respective fields. More importantly, it means that their credentialing in peace studies helps distinguish them from their competitors and enhances their professional flexibility.”


Three recent or soon-to-be graduates have accepted tenure-track appointments beginning in fall 2018.


Karie Cross Web

Karie Cross Riddle received her Ph.D. in political science and peace studies. She has accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Political Science at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, where her teaching will be divided between political science and international development studies.


“I am certain that my peace studies background convinced the search committee that I'd be able to handle teaching and advising in two fields,” says Cross Riddle. “Moreover, the development students are extremely interested in peacebuilding, so the substance of my study at Kroc will be extremely useful to my teaching and ongoing research at the intersection of peace and development.”


Cross Riddle graduated in August 2017, but took advantage of Notre Dame’s 5+1 Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, which guarantees a postdoc appointment for any graduate student in the arts, humanities and social sciences who completes their doctoral program in five years. During the 2017-2018 academic year, Cross Riddle taught a Gender Studies course at Saint Mary’s College and a Peace Studies course at Notre Dame. The postdoctoral appointment allowed her to gain valuable teaching experience, while also providing time to focus her energy on publications and job applications.


Leo Guardado Web

Leo Guardado will graduate with a Ph.D. in theology and peace studies in May 2018. He has accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Theology at Fordham University in New York.


“The schools I applied to (Jesuit institutions) were excited to have someone who could teach theology in relation to the pressing and critical issues of our time,” says Guardado. “I trust that the integration of these two fields of study will continue as I begin my teaching and further my research.”



Chris Haw Web

Chris Haw will graduate in August with a Ph.D. in theology and peace studies. He has accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Theology at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania.


“The dual-degree program helped me expand my competencies and fields of scholarship, helping me speak in and outside the boundaries of my theological discipline,” says Haw. “This came not only from my array of courses and research, but through Kroc's regularly cross-pollinating students and faculty through lectures over lunches. This ambidextrous training was crucial in my landing a tenure-track professorship upon completing my doctorate."


Two additional doctoral students graduating in August have accepted prestigious positions at universities with long-term connections to the Kroc Institute and the field of peace studies.


Francis Bonenfant 2012 Web

Francis Bonenfant-Juwong will graduate with a Ph.D. in history and peace studies. He has accepted a position as Lecturer in the Peace and Justice Studies Program at Pace University in New York.


“One of the great benefits of receiving a Kroc Institute education is the value added of a degree in both peace studies and a conventional discipline,” says Bonenfant-Juwong. “Not only are your career options expanded, but with most jobs you apply to, your skills and specialties are especially versatile and can give you an extra edge in terms of appeal.”


Heather Dubois 2012 Web

Heather DuBois will graduate with a Ph.D. in theology and peace studies. She has accepted a two-year placement as a Gannon Post-Doctoral Fellow in Religion, Ethics and Philosophy at Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida. The position is an interdisciplinary appointment in one of the leading U.S. religious studies programs.


“Multi-disciplinary research is the best way to approach the complex socio-political problems that we face,” says DuBois. “Kroc prepared me to seek out and create such research.”