LuAnn McCracken Fletcher
Chair of the Department of History, Literature, and Languages
B.A. in English and Psychology, Lehigh University
M.A. in English, Lehigh University
Ph.D. in English, University of California, Los Angeles
LuAnn is professor, chair, and program director in the English department at Cedar Crest College
During her time at the college, she has taught more than 30 different literature and writing courses. She also advises Preterite, the college's literary club, and The Maurauders, a Harry Potter and fantasy club. She has previously served as department chair for Humanities.
Memberships & Awards
LuAnn is a member of the Modern Language Association (MLA), the Victorians Institute, the British Association for Victorian Studies, and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP).
Articles & Publications
LuAnn has co-edited an anthology of Victorian prose. She has also published scholarly articles on Charles Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, and Virginia Woolf, and presented conference papers on George Gissing's New Woman novel, "The Odd Woman," and on J.K. Rowling's "Harry Potter" series. Her current research focuses on the significance of mirrors in contemporary British literature.
Associate Professor of History
Lauren Braun-Strumfels, PhD. is an Associate Professor of History with a focus on migration and transnational history. She writes about the critical role Italians had in shaping US immigration policy at the turn of the twentieth century. She is the author of Partners in Gatekeeping: How Italy Shaped U.S. Immigration Policy over Ten Critical Years, 1891-1901 (University of Georgia Press, 2023). and coeditor of Managing Migration in Italy and the United States, which will be published by DeGruyter simultaneously in the US and Europe. She is a contributor to Rituals of Migration: Irish and Italians on the Move (New York University Press, 2025). She has also published “Binational Gatekeepers: The Italian Government and U.S. Border Enforcement in the 1890s,” Labor: Studies in Working-Class History 18:1 (March 2021), 11-37; and on her experiences teaching incarcerated students in New Jersey in “Knowing Students Inside,” in Books Behind Bars: Stories from the Prison Books Movement ed. Moira and Mac Marquis (University of Georgia Press, 2023).
Her work as a transnational US historian crosses historiographical boundaries that traditionally divide United States and European history. She has an active research pipeline at the intersection of US immigration policy and Italian migration history, and in her research, teaching, and service she works to build communities and foster connection in the classroom, on campus, and internationally. The meaning of her research, teaching, and mentoring are captured in the words that form the core of her professional value set: connection, community, and intentionality.
Her academic research is motivated by connection—encouraging scholars working on migration from the nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries, who are studying or based in diverse sending countries, to consider how the US became a gatekeeping nation through the history of Italian exclusion. She reveals the messy ways that barriers to the freedom to move formed to control working-class people in the early twentieth century.
Her work brings her to Rome frequently. She researches primarily in the records of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a rich yet little explored archive that illuminates US history in the era of mass migration. In 2020 she held the Fulbright Research Lectureship in US History in the Department of Political Science at the University of Rome III, and in 2014 she was the inaugural Community College Humanities Association Affiliated Fellow at the American Academy in Rome.
She presents regularly at conferences and roundtables on topics like using foreign archives to illuminate US history (Organization of American Historians, 2023); the scholarship of work and the work of scholarship (OAH, 2022); Understanding early migration from Italy: The case of Sicily and Louisiana (Oxford University, 2022); and Terminal does not mean dead: why the history MA deserves our attention (American Historical Association, 2020), also a featured article in Perspectives on History in May 2021.
At Cedar Crest, she teaches courses in US, European, and world migration history and co-advises the History and Political Science Club. She is a former director of the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship at Raritan Valley Community College. She emphasizes peer support, community building, and practical strategies to increase self-efficacy in her teaching and mentoring. You can read her 2020 piece, Adapting to the Research Conditions at Hand, in Perspectives on History.
Dr. Carpino earned her BA in Politics from Fairfield University and her MA and PhD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to teaching at Cedar Crest, she taught at Santa Clara University and JFK University in California. In addition to teaching Political Science, Dr. Carpino also serves at the Director for the Lehigh Valley Research Consortium, a collaborative program that connects local faculty with community organizations to conduct community-based research.
Michelle Forsell, Esq.
Michelle earned her BA in Political Science from West Chester University, her JD from Villanova University School of Law, and her MA from Temple University. She is a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania practicing primarily in estate planning/administration and municipal law. Michelle previously gained experience with the Superior Court of Pennsylvania, Lehigh County Court of Common Pleas, and a large Philadelphia firm. She is admitted to practice in numerous federal courts, and continues to hold leadership positions in the Villanova Inn of Court and the Bar Association of Lehigh County, serving as its president in 2017.
At Cedar Crest, Michelle teaches courses on women’s rights and American law.
Director of Writing
B.A. in English, Drew University
M.A. in Literature, Villanova University
PhD. in English, Lehigh University
Peter Nagy studies American literature, modernism, gender studies, queer studies, and even comic books.
He teaches courses on superheroes, film, and American fiction and poetry.
Carol A. Pulham
B.A. in English, Cedar Crest College
M.A., Ph. D., Lehigh University
Carol is a professor in the English department. She returned to full-time teaching after seven years of holding various administrative positions at Cedar Crest College, including associate provost, provost, and one year as acting president.
As an alumna, Carol chose to teach at Cedar Crest College to become part of our tradition of excellence that she first experienced as a Cedar Crest student. She strives to prepare students for careers, graduate school and life after college, and is also personally inspired by the students that she works with each semester.
Memberships & Awards
Carol is a member of the Modern Language Association (MLA).
She won the Alumnae Teaching Faculty Award in 2019.
She enjoys traveling and organizes semi-annual week-abroad trips with Cedar Crest faculty and students. Most recently, Carol traveled to London, England with a group of alumnae, students and faculty to explore the literature of London.
James J. Ward, Ph.D.
B.A., Middlebury College
M.A., New York University
Ph.D., New York University
Modern European History
18th and 19th Century Art History
Film and History
Topics in Popular Culture
Professor James Ward, Ph.D., has authored numerous articles including history as represented in film, problems of history and memory, German history and politics, and the politics of culture. He has earned Cedar Crest's Alumnae Teaching Award, which is presented annually by the College's Alumnae Association. For the last last several years he has taught a course titled Zombies-From the Living Dead to the Posthuman.
"Men (and women) are free to act to shape their history. But not always in circumstances of their own choosing." (Karl Marx).
Program Director of the Pan-European Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing
Alison Wellford is associate professor and director of the Pan-European MFA in Creative Writing at Cedar Crest College. She published the novel, INDOLENCE, and wrote the screenplay adaptation that has been optioned for film. Her work has appeared in The Gettysburg Review and The Barcelona Review, among other journals, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She has received fellowships from Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and The MacDowell Colony.