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Meet BSC's Faculty

Our faculty make Birmingham-Southern a special place. They're world-class teachers and scholars in their fields who do more than teach.

Meet just a few of our professors here. For a full list, click here.

Louanne Jacobs

Louanne Jacobs, Education
"If you can't teach with just a stick and dirt, you can't teach," says education professor Louanne Jacobs. That's a mantra she came to after taking BSC students to a small village school in Ghana, where lessons sometimes came down to the teacher drawing in the dirt. Dr. Jacobs, like all of BSC's education faculty, is dedicated to preparing students to take on any challenge—whether that's teaching in the most high-tech modern high school or a low-resource classroom where you have to find creative solutions. She teaches in practical ways: leading students through redesigning the curriculum for a local park; cultivating a massive reading list of children's literature; and carefully guiding students through their first teaching experiences. With those basics—plus the energy and intellectual curiosity we prize here at BSC—you'll be ready for whatever comes next.

Natalie Davis

Natalie Davis, Political Science
When the New York Times has questions about election results in Alabama, they always turn to Natalie Davis. Davis is the go-to source when it comes to explaining local and regional politics to the rest of the world, and she appears frequently in national and local media. But Dr. Davis is more than just an armchair quarterback: she conducts political polls across the South and even ran for the U.S. Senate herself. Her connections pay off by providing a steady stream of experts to talk to her classes in Southern politics, the media and democracy, and research methods. The day after the 2012 presidential election, she had one of the country's top pollsters—one of her former students—discuss the results with her class via Skype. Talk about being in the loop.

Duane Pontius

Duane Pontius, Physics
Since when have you met a professor who can compare sailing—or dancing—and physics? Duane Pontius, T. Morris Hackney Professor of Physics, has plenty of ways of looking outside of the box. And every one is meant to help students understand the material he teaches. It's paid off, too; he was named the Carnegie Alabama Teacher of the Year in 2009, and in 2013 received one of BSC's Presidential Service Awards. A BSC graduate, Dr. Pontius had a career as a research scientist in space physics before returning to campus as a professor; his groundbreaking research on the moons of Saturn is still in use by NASA. He also spends time researching the best ways to teach introductory physics, and spends three weeks every January leading students through sail training aboard a classical tall ship.