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Castro named McClure Professor of Teaching Excellence

May 15, 2020

A.H. Peter Castro

A.H. Peter Castro

A. Peter Castro, professor of anthropology, has been named a Robert D. McClure Professor of Teaching Excellence. 

The McClure Professorship is awarded to members of the Maxwell faculty in recognition of their dedication to teaching lower-division, interdisciplinary courses for undergraduates. Castro will hold the McClure Professorship for the next three years, during which time he will oversee the suite of signature MAX Courses. There are three MAX Courses team-taught by instructors from across the Maxwell School—MAX 123: Critical Issues in the U.S., MAX 132: Global Community, and MAX 201: Quantitative Analysis for the Social Sciences. Together, the MAX Courses provide undergraduate students a broad, interdisciplinary introduction to public and international affairs, citizenship, and qualitative and quantitative approaches to social and policy analysis. Castro has long participated in the MAX Courses, with both his research and teaching foci emphasizing the international dimensions of citizenship. 

The McClure Professorship supports both teaching excellence and research. It is funded by a gift from John L. and Stephanie G. Palmer, with additional support from members of the Maxwell School Advisory Board, other alumni, and friends of the School. The award is named in recognition of Robert McClure’s long-standing commitment to undergraduate education, including his leadership in creating the MAX Courses themselves while serving as Maxwell’s senior associate dean.

McClure, professor emeritus of political science and public affairs, taught in Maxwell for 45 years. Over the course of his career, he served for 13 years as senior associate dean in Maxwell and for three years as director of the Syracuse University Honors Program. He retired in 2014. In the classroom, McClure focused on helping students develop deep critical thinking skills. McClure’s book, The Unseeing Eye: The Myth of Television Power in National Elections, coauthored with Thomas E. Patterson, has been recognized by the American Association for Public Opinion Research as one of the most influential books in the field.

Castro is an applied cultural anthropologist whose research focuses on the environment and development planning, especially in East Africa. He has written or edited five books, and is the author of numerous articles appearing in such journals as the Journal of International and Global Studies, the Journal of Development Studies, and World Development. In addition to his research and teaching, Castro frequently consults with external organizations, including the New East Foundation, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, and the United States Agency for International Development. 


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