At the heart of most faculty-in-residence programs are faculty members and their families who live on campus in community with students. This living-learning arrangement enables formal and informal interactions between students and professors that form a bridge between the classroom and student life.
Higher education research shows that faculty-in-residence programs positively impact student satisfaction with the college experience and student retention rates as well as student learning, growth and achievement. At The University of Tulsa, our Faculty in Residence program builds on our already small class sizes (average 13), low student-faculty ratio (11:1) and close-knit campus community.
Meet the Contois family
The current TU faculty in residence is Emily Contois, an assistant professor of media studies. She lives in LaFortune House with her husband, Chris, and their dog, Raven.
In her research, Contois examines how our identities are shaped and reflected in media and popular culture, focusing on the intersection of food, bodies and ideas about health. She holds a doctorate in American studies and a certificate in gender and sexuality studies from Brown University, as well as a master’s in gastronomy from Boston University and another in public health from University of California, Berkeley. Contois is the author of Diners, Dudes, and Diets: How Gender and Power Collide in Food Media and Culture and co-editor with her TU colleague Zenia Kish of Food Instagram: Identity, Influence, and Negotiation. She is currently working on a new book about how the idea “like an athlete” has infiltrated American consumer culture. You can even catch her on an episode of Ugly Delicious on Netflix! She also loves teaching, whether TU’s First Year Experience, intro courses for media studies and women’s and gender studies or electives on food media, advertising, popular culture and other topics.
Contois met her husband, Chris, when they were in college, and they’ve been happily together for nearly 20 years. Chris is a sports performance physical therapist and earned his master’s in physical therapy from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. He has worked with elite Olympic, professional, college and high school athletes across the country. Here in Tulsa, he works at Vitality Therapy and Performance, and when he’s not working he loves to work out and watch movies. Chris and Emily adopted their dog, Raven, back when she was a shy, 4-year-old shelter pup. Today, she confidently strolls around campus nearly every day on her walks. Raven loves to stop and say hello to students and friends, especially those who live with her in LaFortune House!
The Contois family enjoys living, learning and interacting with TU students – whether out on walks, at a family dinner or other events in the Faculty in Residence apartment or throughout campus for cafeteria meals, Golden Hurricane athletic and Student Association events, art exhibitions, music performances, lectures, symposia and so much more. To TU students, Contois says, “We’re excited and honored to be part of your college experience! We genuinely want to know you and are here to support you.”