College of Liberal Arts


Leadership & Staff

The $2 million dollar 4 ½ year Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Engaged Scholar Initiative: A Texas Model will be housed in the College of Liberal Arts and lead by Senior Associate Deans Richard Flores and Esther Raizen. Together with the Program Coordinator, Dr. Mia Carter (Department of English), the Deans will direct the cohort of selected graduate and undergraduate Mellon ESI fellows as they collectively endeavor to expand their base of knowledge and technical expertise. The ESI mission is to share the cohorts’ interdisciplinary Humanities scholarship with local and regional communities and public institutions. The University’s community of Mellon ESI scholars is committed serving the public good and celebrating the cultural and historical resources of the arts and Humanities.

Esther Raizen

Esther Raizen is Senior Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Student Affairs in the College of Liberal Arts and Associate Professor of Middle Eastern Studies. In her role as Associate Dean (2009-present) she has spearheaded a number of college initiatives associated with time to degree of doctoral students, degree completion, professionalization, and student funding. Among these initiatives are the annual Dissertation Boot Camp, graduate administrative internships, collaborative training and placement projects with other universities, and teaching-assistant training.  In her role as chair of Middle Eastern Studies (2005-2010) she obtained a number of programmatic federal grants targeting the development of advanced proficiencies in less-commonly-taught languages. With specialization in foreign language education and instructional technology, she is the author of Modern Hebrew for Beginners, Modern Hebrew for Intermediate Students and Yours Truly and developer of the extensive online interactive materials associated with the three textbooks. She is the current President of the National Association of Professors of Hebrew (NAPH).

Richard Flores

Richard Flores is Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Liberal Arts and Professor of Anthropology and Mexican American & Latina/o Studies at The University of Texas at Austin where he holds the C. B. Smith, Sr. Centennial Chair in U. S.-Mexico Relations. As senior associate dean, he oversees the college’s international mission, curriculum administration, and faculty hiring. He recently chaired the Global Engagement Task Force for the Office of the Provost, and chairs several college-level committees on curriculum development, international affairs, foreign language policy, and strategic academic planning.  He was instrumental in the college being awarded a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship program. He works in the areas of critical theory, performance studies, semiotics, and historical anthropology. Prior to graduate school he worked in Houston and San Antonio where he co-founded and taught in schools for undocumented Mexican children. Dean Flores is the author of Los Pastores: History and Performance in the Mexican Shepherd’s Play of South Texas (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1995), editor of Adina De Zavala’s, History and Legends of the Alamo (Arte Público Press, 1996), Remembering the Alamo: Memory, Modernity, and the Master Symbol (UT Press 2002) and has published in American Ethnologist, Cultural Anthropology, The Journal of American Folklore, and elsewhere.

Mia Carter

Mia Carter is an Associate Professor, University Distinguished Teaching Associate Professor, and University of Texas System Regents’ Outstanding Teacher in the Department of English. She is the co-editor with Dr. Alan Friedman of the volume, Modernism and Literature: An Introduction and Reader (Routledge, 2013). Carter co-edited the two volume Archives of Empire (Duke U.P., 2003) and Orientalism and Imperialism (Basil Blackwell, 199) with Dr. Barbara Harlow. Dr. Carter specializes in Modern to Contemporary British Literature, Global Modernism, British Cultural Studies, and European and World Cinema. Dr. Carter’s public partnerships have been with the Austin Film Society (Board and Committee Member); Austin's Baranoff Elementary School Young Writers Conference; Laguna Gloria Art Museum; the Southwest Alternative Media Project (SWAMP); the Texas Folklife Festival; Facing History and Ourselves (Cambridge, MA); Austin Community Television (ACTV Board Member); Houston Museum of Fine Arts (MFAH), Africa Film Series; and ACLS, the American Council of Learned Societies (NYC).

Jesi Egan

Jesi Egan is a Postdoctoral Fellow and Program Coordinator in the College of Liberal Arts. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Texas at Austin, where she specialized in 20th century British and Irish women's writing. Her dissertation, Synthetic Readers: The Middlebrow Imagination in British Women's Writing, was awarded the Department of English's Outstanding Dissertation Award in 2018. During her eight years at UT, she has developed and taught eleven courses in the fields of LGBTQ and women's studies, literary modernism, contemporary British literature, and fan studies. Prior to joining the Mellon ESI staff, she held a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellowship in the Department of English and worked as a professional writing consultant. In addition to teaching and advising in the Mellon ESI program, she maintains an active research agenda. Her current project, Playful Pedagogy, synthesizes her work on popular cultures of reading with her longstanding interest in collaborative and social-emotional learning to suggest new models for teaching literature at the college level.

Agnes Savich

Agnes Savich is a Program Coordinator in the College of Liberal Arts. She earned her B.A. in Comparative Literature from Northwestern University. At UT Austin since 2013, she first worked in the Office of Undergraduate Research before joining the Liberal Arts Student Division. She is a member of the Haiku Society of America and a published poet; The Watcher: Poems (Venus Moon Press, 2009) and over 400 individual poems in literary haiku journals such as Modern Haiku, Frogpond, Acorn, and The Heron's Nest. She is also a classically trained musician playing oboe in the Perpetual Motion Quintet and other local ensembles.