Sam Bernstein (Ph.D. Student):  I am a sixth year PhD student under the joint advisement of Dr. David L. Andrews and Dr. Michael Friedman.  I am a graduate of both Ithaca College (B.S. Sport Management) and Miami University (M.S. Sport Studies).  During my previous schooling I was lucky enough to work with a variety of outstanding scholars who helped prepare me for the vigorous PCS curriculum.

As a member of the PCS program I am excited by the opportunities afforded me, as well as the future of the program.  To this end, I am thrilled with the growth of the PCS Student Conference.  Last year, I was fortunate to be able to put together an interdisciplinary panel of scholars to address the current challenge presented by America’s fascination with the obesity ‘crisis.’  I am even more encouraged that my PCS colleagues are looking to take this a step further by expanding this year’s conference.

During my time at Maryland I have had the chance to expand my pedagogical practices as a teaching assistant for classes on the History of Sport and Sport in American Society.  This opportunity has reinforced my firm desire to teach and continue to experiment with new pedagogical practices, while gaining invaluable experience as an instructor.

I have recently embarked on a new research project spearheaded by Dr. Friedman that seeks to look at the politics surrounding the 2011 Baltimore Grand Prix.  While this project is still in its infancy, its connection to my many areas of interest – spatial politics, entrepreneurial governance, and the ever-changing urban landscape – has allowed me to throw myself into this project with the hopes of incorporating portions of it into my dissertation.

Bryan Bracey (Ph.D. Candidate):  I am a Ph.D candidate currently working on my dissertation presently entitled Leading Us from Day to Day: Blackness, Discourse and Howard University’s Homecoming.  My project addresses the role of sport at a prominent Historically Black College and reflects my research interests of race, social class, and sport.  Additionally, my research interests include: Hip Hop Culture, Critical Pedagogy, and, more recently, combat sports such as Professional Wrestling and Mixed Martial Arts.  

I did my undergraduate work in Sociology at Howard University before acquiring two Master’s Degrees (Sport Management and Business Administration) at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst.  I have taught classes on the History of Sport in America as well as Research Methods at the University of Maryland and George Mason University.  Currently, I teach the History of Sport in America and Sport and Society at Towson University. In my free time I always enjoy taking in a sporting event, playing cards, and reading.   I have resided in Hyattsville, Maryland for the last five years.

Jacob J. Bustad (Ph.D. Candidate):  The fifth year of my PhD study in Physical Cultural Studies has provided me with an opportunity to experience both teaching and taking classes at the University of Maryland, as a
teaching assistant for History of Sport in America and a student in courses both in Kinesiology and in various disciplines around campus. It is this inter/trans/anti-disciplinary approach that will continue to guide the various strands that my research might take.

In particular, I'm interested in critical social theory, issues of difference and identity regarding the body and active embodiment, and developing a pedagogical 'style' that is both informative and informed by many voices, most importantly the students'. My M.A. research at the University of Kansas explored ideas of national identity, masculinity, and the centrality of the body to social processes within a specific sociohistorical context (American Legion baseball in the post-World War I era). My current interests extend and build on these ideas, with a specific focus on issues of the body and/in/through space - the working body and the active embodiment of labor,  the place (and space) of the body in critical public health dialogues, and the relationship between sporting forms and social justice.

Teams that matter: Iowa Hawkeyes (born and raised), St. Louis Cardinals (love Chicago, hate the Cubs), San Diego Chargers (no clear explanation).

Samuel Clevenger (Ph.D. Student): I am a second-year doctoral student working with Dr. Damion Thomas.  I came to the Physical Cultural Studies
program at the University of Maryland aiming to condust historical analyses on the reification of "sport" in the United States, tracing its modern development and function and how it has "Othered" indigenous and "premodern" societies.  I am interested in multiple fields of historical and sociological inquiry, particularly "Western" sport, frontier mythology, and the environment.  I came to Maryland through Wyoming, having completed my M.A. in Comparative American History at the University of Wyoming.  I have taught and assisted in courses on the history of sport, the history of Wyoming, and early and recent U.S. history.  My perspective on historical inquiry has been heavily influenced by the works of the British social historians E.P. Thompson and Eric Hobsbawm, and am studying and training to become a historical materialist/social historian of sport and society.  I am a Northeast Ohioan.

Bryan C. Clift (Ph.D. Candidate):  A Doctoral Candidate and David H. Clarke Fellow, I am in my final year in the Physical Cultural Studies Program, Department of Kinesiology and School of Public Health.
My previous degrees are from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Georgia. Under the advisement of Dr. David L. Andrews, I am currently in the final stages of writing my dissertation, “Running with neoliberalism: The politics and practice of philanthropy and voluntarism in urban Baltimore.” Borrowing selectively across kinesiology, cultural studies, qualitative inquiry, and urban studies, the project explores and examines how the evolution of philanthropy, charity, and voluntarism as technologies of neoliberal governance contour understandings, experiences, and conduct of citizenship and identity amongst volunteers and those ‘at risk.’ Broadly, my research interests and agenda are oriented around (physical) cultural studies and qualitative inquiry. Specifically, I focus the body and (physical) culture, food and material culture, and how people experience, understand, and respond to urban change as they relate to the production of inequality. Increasingly, I am exploring how to write across disciplines, the political possibilities of creative analytic practice and representation, and drawing linkages across the (in)active body and material culture within culturally framed discourses in effort to broaden budding conceptions and theorizing of physical culture and its orientation as a(n) anti-/trans-/multi-disciplinary project.

Cooking is one of my passions. I enjoy most things footy and to an increasing extent tennis, a good film or book now and again, and opening myself to new experiences and practices. Washington, DC is a wonderful city in which to explore all of these.

Perry Cohen (Ph.D. Candidate):  I am a Ph.D. Candidate in the Physical Cultural Studies Program at the University of Maryland and a David H. Clarke Fellow. I have been
a TA for KNES 287 - Sport in American Society. Working under Dr. David Andrews, I am pursuing my dissertation research on the physical culture of warehouse workers. Currently I work in a grocery warehouse in Vermont in order to facilitate my ethnographic study of industrial athletes. In particular, I am interested in how warehouse workers understand and navigate their lived realities in the face of the increasing automation of what was once a fully manual industry. Along with my interest in warehouse culture, I am interested in how the increasing disconnect between American bodies and our daily labor affects our recreational community and culture.

Prior to joining the PCS program at Maryland I completed my M.S. in Sport Administration at the University of New Mexico and my B.A. in Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania. At the University of Pennsylvania I was the goalkeeper on the varsity women’s team and the scrum-half and captain of the rugby team. I am an avid telemark skier and cyclist and have recently started competing in triathlons.

Stephanie Cork (Ph.D. Student): I am a second year PhD student at the University of Maryland, working with Dr. Dave Andrews. Originally from Canada, I completed both my BAH and MA in Sociology at
Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, where I used to cross-country ski to campus; now I’m more likely running or biking. My Master’s thesis project, entitled: “Prometheus to Pistorius: A Genealogy of Physical Ability,” looked into intersections of twenty-first century warfare and technology with the fractured frames of military amputees returning to the homefront. My current research interests include identity politics, celebrity culture, disability studies, military, cybernetics, embodiment, Die Antwoord and Oscar Pistorius. I find that sport is a perfect nexus through which I can analyze the realities of bodily augmentation (specifically prostheses). My proposed PhD project will engage the interpersonal relationships of individuals living with acquired disability, specifically from the military context.

Yoseph Demissie (Ph.D. Student):

Shaun Edmonds (Ph.D. Student): This is my second year as a student in the Physical Culture Studies program at the University of Maryland. Broadly stated, my research interests focus on the
intersections of sexuality, physical health, and organized physical activity throughout the life course. I’m currently working with Dr. David L. Andrews. This fall I am the teaching assistant for Dr. Stephen Roth’s course KNES 289X/H; Genetically-Modified Humans: Physical Performance in the Post-Genomic-Era.

Before beginning doctoral research at UMD, I completed a master’s in Human Sexuality Studies at San Francisco State University under advisement of Dr. Gilbert Herdt and Dr. Susan Zieff. I also have a B.A. in English Literate with a minor in East Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and am an alumnus of the JET Programme. 

Recently I’ve taken a keen interest in the relatively new phenomenon of obstacle course races such as the Warrior Dash and Tough Mudder, and am excited to participate in as many of these races as I can over the next year. Additionally, I enjoy video games and baking desserts.

Victor Lopes (M.A. Student): I am from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and arrived at UMD on the Fall semester of 2013 to pursue my Masters degree. Coming to PCS is diversification/differentiation of my former main field of study and work. I hold a B.S. degree in  Business Administration (2006) and a course extension in Sports Marketing (2012) 
both from PUC-Rio. Prior to my arrival at Maryland, I was working on the Sports Planning department of Brazilian Olympic Committee involved with the preparation of athletes for Rio 2016 by supporting sports federations/organizations establishing quantitative metrics.  Additionally, I worked in marketing and financial departments of organizations from retail industry as well as being coordinator of Endeavor, an international non-profit organization focused on empowering local high impact entrepreneurs in developing countries, giving access to knowledge and best managing practices. 

Due to my overall past experience , I developed knowledge in financial and business plan elaboration and analysis, as well as skills to evaluate organizational strategic planning.  

At PCS, under Dr. David Andrews guidance, I am expecting to develop a critical work in talent and social development with sports/physical activities, using as background the sport mega events occurring in Brazil, in comparison to the practices commonly occurred in US within sports field that impact society and its political, economical and sociological structures. 

Julie Maier (Ph.D. Student): I am a second-year Physical Cultural Studies doctoral student under the guidance of Dr. Shannon Jette. Heavily influenced by the work of feminist critical health scholars, my research interests focus on the related areas of women’s sexuality,
experiences of distress, and body work.  Specifically, I am interested in exploring how dominant discourses pertaining to gender, (hetero)sexuality, and health are taken up or resisted by women of various sexual identities.  Particular empirical areas of interest include women’s 1) management of mental illness; 2) body projects (e.g., Brumberg, 1997), from fitspiration to designer vaginas; and 3) sexual practices, such as same-sex desires and experiences.  I am currently working on a project focused on women living with Obsessive Compulsive Related Disorders (OCRD), looking specifically at the ways participants cope with their symptoms and the effect their distress has on their intimate relationships.  Prior to beginning doctoral studies, I worked as a research assistant on the GoodPlay project at Harvard Project Zero and assisted Dr. Laina Bay-Cheng (University at Buffalo, SUNY) with research focusing on youth empowerment.  My academic background is in Human Development (BS, Cornell University) and Social Work (MSW, University at Buffalo, SUNY). 

In my free time, I enjoy longboarding, mountain biking, playing the piano and ukulele, taking trips to the ocean, and counting down the days until I can have a canine companion (beagle!).  

Travis Manger (M.A. Student): I am a second-year Master's student in the Physical Cultural Studies program at the University of Maryland under the advisement of Dr. Damion Thomas.  Outside of the PCS program, I serve as a graduate assistant football coach for the
Maryland Terrapins.  At UMD, I'm looking to augment my previous studies by researching the history, culture, and psychology of athletics at the NCAA Division-I level.  Looking to build upon my playing and coaching experiences, I'm specifically interested in studying how to play a part in positively changing the historical and cultural factors that affect Division-I athletic organizations.  Anything university-related is of interest: worshipping coaching legends, mascot or school color choices, fight song lyrics, Title IX, Proposition 48, to television and social media's impact.  Due to recent scandals and the amount of revenue generated, the culture surrounding major college athletics, specifically football and basketball,  has never been more scrutinized.  What role does athletics have at American universities going forward?  Considering the amount of money brand name universities make during football and basketball seasons, have we as a society passed a point of no return?  There is not a better place to more closely examine the NCAA's 21st-Century paradigm than at Maryland, a university with storied athletic success and tradition second to none.

Prior to Maryland, I studied at Temple University earning my B.A. in Journalism (2008) and M.S. in Psychology of Human Movement (2012).  While at Temple, I was a Quarterback and Tight End on the football team.  I received the 2007 Dr. Peter Chodoff Academic Excellence Award for my performance as a student-athlete.  After completing my playing career, I transitioned into a graduate assistant coaching role from 2009 through early 2012.  It was during my time at Temple that I discovered an interest in furthering my study of the cultural side of athletics through a sociology elective dealing with everything from Little League parents to European football hooligans to the concept of Muscular Christianity.  

My career goal is to be the head football coach of my alma mater, Temple, or Maryland.  Along the way, I'm looking to be as positive an influence as I can be for the athletes I coach and the people around me on a daily basis.  To be the best possible influence, I need to have a better understanding of the cultural factors in play that affect each person differently.  

A native of the Philadelphia area, I am an avid Eagles, Phillies, Flyers, and Sixers fan.  I'm an avid runner and cyclist and am always looking to explore new roads and trails in the area when not coaching.  I have run multiple Broad Street Runs and in 2010, I rode in RAGBRAI; a seven-day tour across the state of Iowa from the Missouri River to the Mississippi River.  In addition, I'm always down for a game of pick-up basketball.  Go Terps!

James McBean (Ph.D. Student):  I am a fifth year Physical Cultural Studies Ph.D. student, temporarily on leave of absence, working under Dr. Damion Thomas. My exploration in PCS initially began with various areas of interest all concerning power, the active black body, and space.
I am most interested in pursuing Postcolonialism and the deconstruction of colonial legacies over formerly colonized black bodies.

This is fascinating and critical as this deconstruction reveals racialized and classed bodies. Resulting from this power struggle is the occurrence of acceptance and tolerance of alienation of these subaltern bodies simultaneously the quest for personhood and escape from alterity within the state. I am currently conducting ethnography on this very topic; how the subaltern black bodies create personhood through indigenous forms of embodiment in Jamaica such as Dancehall and what knowledge that yields. 

In addition to understanding the dialectical relationship between physical cultures of the subaltern black body, and the spaces in which they exist, my long term goal is that my research will yield effective, normative ways to create and to develop culturally based social intervention programs in which this demographic can achieve sustained personhood in post-colonial “independent” Jamaica.

Prior to UMD I studied at Johns Hopkins University where I earned my Masters of Public Policy and earlier I studied at Brandeis University where I earned two degrees in both Economics and Spanish Language & Literature.  

I am the founder and recently elected president of the Kingston based Jamaican Fencing Federation (JFF). We are working diligently to incorporate JFF affiliates throughout the Jamaican Diaspora, enhance our administrative capacity, build our endowment and ready our fencers to continue our Olympic legacy.

I currently live outside of Mexico City, Mexico with my wife and son where my time is split between Mexico and Kingston. Besides the JFF I’ve returned to my old stomping grounds currently teaching both Intro. Economics and International Relations at University El Tec de Monterrey (CEM).

Ron Mower (Ph.D. Candidate):  Fall 2012 marks the beginning of my sixth year in the Physical Cultural Studies program under the advisement of Dr. David L. Andrews.  During my time here, PCS has supportively enabled me to explore and direct my
research agenda and interests, which currently include the racial and cultural politics of sport celebrities; late capitalist logics and the cultural economies of post-industrial urban space; popular memory, filmic representations, and the visual uses of (sport) history in postmodern consumer culture; (trans)nationalism, global sport, and symbolic production; and the processes and forces impacting the socio-spatial polarizations of ethnicity, class, gender, and health within the revitalized entrepreneurial city.  In preparation for my dissertation, I am currently conducting preliminary ethnographic fieldwork within Baltimore City to examine the contemporary structure and experience of voluntary sector provisions for health, physical activity, and sport amongst the city’s disadvantaged in the wake of de-industrialization, neoliberal policies, and urban decline. This Fall I will be teaching KNES 484: Sporting Hollywood and in the past have served as a teaching assistant for KNES293: History of Sport in America, KNES 287: Sport in American Society, KNES 485: Sport and Globalization, and KNES 289Y: The (In)Active City: The Physical Cultures of Metropolitan Baltimore. In 2006, I graduated Summa cum Laude from the University of Maryland with a B.S. in Kinesiology and earned a M.S. in Sport & Leisure Commerce from the University of Memphis in 2008.

Oliver Rick (Ph.D. Candidate):  I am from Croydon (South London) United Kingdom and lived there my whole life until I moved to the US for a semester in 2007 to take part in a study abroad program at the University of Rhode Island. I enjoyed the program so much that when the opportunity arose to return to complete
my Masters at URI I jumped at it and started in the program in 2008. I have always loved and played sport and have played (American) football at a national level. However, these days you will mostly finding me cycling.

I completed my B.Sc. Honors in Economics and Sports & Coaching at Oxford Brookes University in 2008. During my undergraduate studies I took courses in a variety of areas from globalization of sport to skill acquisition, to international economics. When I started at URI in 2008 I had a chance to specify, these interests while still developing my focuses. As such I took classes in both cultural studies and psychosocial aspects of sport. Ultimately I decided to focus in on Cultural studies in sport in my thesis and planned to carry this on in my PhD studies.

I have and will be studying under the tutelage of Dr. Andrews during my time at Maryland, but also have a great group of colleagues that I have and continue to write and develop my role as an academic with. My Masters thesis was "An Ethnography of International Student Athletes at the University of Rhode Island" and therefore this topic and those tangential to it continue to be an interest of mine. I have also been working on pieces surrounding sporting celebrity, international eligibility in rugby, white masculinity and the NFL, the production of cycling spaces in urban environs and the discourses that surround this production, affect theory and physical culture as well as the intersections and differences in assemblage theory and cultural studies. I have taken classes across campus from women’s studies to Sociology which continue to expand these interests and therefore I am interested more widely in: globalization, international sport, international athletes, the nation, feminist theory, revolution and social change, and the sociology of knowledge (epistemology, methodology and ontology).

I look forward to developing my research abilities and knowledge and also look forward very much to TA-ing classes during this time as well.

Kristi Tredway (Ph.D. Student):  I am a fourth-year doctoral student in Physical Cultural Studies.  My work centers on the intersection between British cultural studies, feminist theory, performance studies, and sport, with my eye primarily
set on the arena of women's professional tennis.  The stories in tennis that I enjoy investigating the most are those that counter the hegemonic ideals of tennis.  I am always eager to further clarify my lenses for understanding gender, race, class, sexuality and power – classic intersectionality – especially as they are used to view sport.

My interest in tennis stems from the 41/2 years I spent playing tennis professionally.  When my knee blew out, Rosie Casals, my coach and an International Tennis Hall of Fame inductee, told me to go to college until I figured out what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.  I did and I, almost instantaneously, fell in love with academia.  I earned a B.A. in Women Studies and Philosophy, and an M.A. in Religious Studies, more specifically American Indian cultures and philosophy, from the University of Colorado.  My intellectual and theoretical lineage is most marked by the amazing professors that I have had, including Dr. Alison Jaggar, Dr. Joy A. James, and Vine Deloria, Jr., Dr. Patricia Hill Collins, and Dr. David L. Andrews.  This lineage gives me much clearer lenses in which to view gender, race, class, sexuality, and power.

I grew up in Northern California – leaving when I was 24.  My family has been in California since the mid-1930s and my grandfather was, during the 1970s, the president of the Winery Workers Union, which is the second largest union in California behind the teacher's union.  I left California to attend the University of Colorado and I lived for almost eight years in beautiful Colorado.  In 2002, my partner and I moved to the area of Maryland’s western shore and we have lived here for eleven years now, except for the 2009-2010 academic year when we lived in Costa Rica.  I have had quite a physical and academic journey for a girl from American Indian, working-class stock from the Central Valley of California.  My primary interests apart from my work are tennis, surfing, the San Francisco Giants, World Cup soccer, Shakira, Doctor Who, Supernatural, and, of course, women's sports.  My spare time is spent with my partner, a tenured faculty member at St. Mary's College of Maryland, and our 8-year-old daughter.  We live in Leonardtown, Maryland.