GESI professors guide the curriculum for the Pre-Departure Learning and Final Reflection Summits, acting as important resources to students before, during, and after their on-the-ground experience. These professors are committed to experiential learning and student reflection opportunities.
Paul Arntson received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin in Communication Arts with a minor in Educational Psychology. He joined the Communication Studies Department in 1974 and was the chair for six years. He is on the faculty of the Asset Based Community Development Institute at the Institute for Policy Research and a Fellow at the Center for Communication and Medicine at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. He is a member of the General Faculty Committee and was elected to serve as its chair.
Professor Arntson has conducted research and training programs in British, Australian, and American primary care contexts, with self help groups, and with neighborhood associations in order to improve citizens’ decision making competencies concerning their health and the well-being of their communities.
His research includes understanding how pediatric cancer survivors and their parents communicate bout their cancer experiences, investigating how to improve communication between primary care providers and deaf patients, evaluating community living options for adults with disabilities, and documenting how community based organizations contribute to the well-being of their neighborhoods . He is also part of an NIH grant studying how families can make informed decisions concerning fertility options when their daughters are diagnosed with having cancer.
Professor Arntson teaches leadership and decision-making courses at the undergraduate level, at the graduate level in the Masters of Manufacturing Management program, in the Managerial Communication Masters program, and in the Ph.D. program. Through a Ford Foundation Grant on Difficult Dialogues he developed and hosts a first year seminar on how to discuss issues of identity, diversity, and religion. He previously held the Van Zelt Chair in Communication Research and the first Alumnae of Northwestern Teaching Professorship.
Professor Arntson was the founder and then director of Northwestern University’s Undergraduate Leadership Program for 12 years. He is also the founding coordinator of Northwestern University’s Public Interest Program that places graduating seniors in public interest fellowships each year. He teaches in the Certificate for Service Learning Program and co-directs the capstone community projects. He also teaches in the Center for Global Engagement and works with groups of students in Africa, India, and Argentina each summer. He recently helped establish the Center for Civic Engagement at Northwestern University.
He has lived in Evanston for the past 36 years with his wife Martha, who is the director of the Childcare Network of Evanston. Professor Arntson works with leadership and community engagement organizations in Evanston, Chicago, and around the world.
Brian Hanson is the Director of Programs Research and Operations of the Buffett Center for International and Comparative Studies and a faculty member in the Department of Political Science. He oversees the Center for Global Engagement at the Buffett Center and the Global Engagement Studies Institute.
Hanson teaches courses on international development, international political economy, globalization, and the changing role of the state in world politics. His current research is on the European trade politics and community-based approaches to global development.
In addition to his work at Northwestern, Hanson is also actively involved in fields of international philanthropy, international development and foreign affairs. He is Chair of the Board of GlobeMed, a national organization started at Northwestern, which seeks to build a new generation of leaders in global health by involving undergraduates in health projects in the developing world. He serves on the board of the Foundation for Sustainable Development, which works with indigenous, grassroots development organizations to address local issues of poverty, health, education, environmental sustainability and poverty alleviation.
He is the former board chair of the Chicago Global Donors Network, and serves as an adviser to the Holthues Trust and on the board of the Hanson Family Foundation, which are grant giving organizations that support global development, human rights, poverty alleviation and environmental work around the world.
Hanson is also vice chair of the Stanley Foundation, which promotes multilateral approaches to address international problems such as securing nuclear materials, prevention of genocide and mass atrocities, and evolution and innovation in global governance.
Previously, he has served as the Foreign Policy Advisor to U.S. Senator Alan Dixon of IL, and as the number two in Washington DC government affairs office of John Deere and Company.
Hanson received his BA from Grinnell College in Iowa and did his doctoral studies in political science at MIT.