Center welcomes new postdoctoral fellow

September 6, 2022

This fall, Wes Siscoe, Ph.D. is joining the Center for Social Concerns as a postdoctoral fellow with Virtues & Vocations, a national forum for scholars and practitioners across disciplines to consider how best to cultivate character in pre-professional and professional education. The fellowship is a year-long opportunity to conduct scholarly research on pedagogical techniques designed to inculcate the moral virtues. 

Siscoe’s interest in the connection between ethics and education developed well before he received his Ph.D. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Olivet Nazarene University, he served for two years as a high school math teacher with Teach for America (TFA), an organization that places highly-qualified teachers in low-income school districts in hopes of closing the achievement gap between poorer and wealthier students. Along with instructing students in trigonometry and pre-calculus, Siscoe also focused on helping students develop moral virtues that would help them beyond the classroom.

Since receiving his philosophy Ph.D. at the University of Arizona, Siscoe’s academic work has centered on taking abstract ideas from ethics and epistemology and connecting them to how people live their day-to-day lives. Drawing on his training with TFA along with his scholarly research, Siscoe has served as a course design specialist for the Philosophy as a Way of Life project, training faculty members to create courses that encourage students to translate philosophical insights into daily practices.  

Over the course of the upcoming academic year, Virtues and Vocations will conduct faculty workshops, host several in-person conferences, and continue to reflect on character and professional education through its publications. With Siscoe’s focus on pedagogy and moral formation, his addition to the Center will be integral to the success of these projects.

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