Andrew P. Owsiak, a professor of international affairs within the School of Public and International Affairs, has been named interim associate dean of the Jere W. Morehead Honors College, effective Aug. 1. He will primarily oversee the academic side of the college and coordinate CURO, the UGA-wide Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities.
A Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor, Owsiak’s research focuses on foreign policy, including international and civil war, democratization, crisis diplomacy, international conflict management and international law.
“Dr. Owsiak is well recognized in his field as a dedicated researcher and excellent instructor and mentor, and we are grateful to him for serving as our interim associate dean,” said David S. Williams, associate provost and dean of the Morehead Honors College. “He is very dedicated to Honors undergraduates—and to all UGA students—and he is a wonderful fit for our college.”
Since joining the UGA faculty in 2011, Owsiak has taught classes across the entire curriculum—from a First-Year Odyssey seminar to the introductory course in international relations to upper-level classes like crisis diplomacy. He has mentored dozens of undergraduates through CURO and has guided undergraduate theses, interdisciplinary honors degrees, master’s theses and doctoral dissertations.
Owsiak has authored two books, 24 peer-reviewed articles and 10 book chapters in publications at the top of his discipline. External funders supporting his research include the U.S. Department of Defense, the United States Institute of Peace and the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame, where he recently completed a visiting faculty research fellowship.
His most recent book, On Dangerous Ground, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2021.
“I am both humbled by and excited about this opportunity,” Owsiak said. “I look forward to collaborating with my colleagues across campus, as well as the amazing team in the Morehead Honors College, to continue the excellence that defines the UGA Honors and CURO programs.”
UGA has recognized Owsiak for excellence in teaching and mentoring through a variety of awards. He received the CURO Research Mentoring Award in 2014, the Richard B. Russell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in 2015, the SPIA Student Union Teaching Award in 2015, the First-Year Odyssey Teaching Award in 2017, the SPIA Excellence in Teaching Award in 2018 and the Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professorship in 2020.
The UGA Teaching Academy added Owsiak to its ranks in 2017, and he now serves on its executive committee. He also co-facilitates its fellows program, through which he and other instructors mentor early-career faculty across campus.
Owsiak also works with students through the Student Veterans Resource Center, which named him a Distinguished Faculty Fellow in 2018; is involved with the Oxford at UGA Program, which named him a Friend of UGA Oxford in 2018; and has advised the international affairs honor society Sigma Iota Rho and Model United Nations clubs.
His involvement with the Morehead Honors College includes serving on numerous student scholarship committees including the Boren, Truman and Foundation Fellows scholarships; leading Honors book discussions; serving as a faculty panelist for various Honors events; and co-facilitating the Foundation Fellows travel-study trip to New York and Washington, D.C.
From 2013-2019, Owsiak served on the University Council, fulfilling committee roles including in faculty affairs (2013-2015), educational affairs (2015-2017), statutes and bylaws (2019-2020), and the executive committee (2016-2019). In 2018-2019, he chaired its executive committee, representing UGA faculty at the UGA Foundation and USG Faculty Council. His advisory board work includes the First-Year Odyssey Program, Division of Academic Enhancement and Office of Instruction. He is currently on the 2022 Quality Enhancement Plan development and implementation committee.
Owsiak holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Illinois, a master’s degree in conflict resolution from the University of Denver, and a bachelor’s degree in economics and Spanish from Xavier University.
Maria Navarro, who served as associate director of the Honors Program until being titled associate dean of the newly named Morehead Honors College, is returning to her faculty position as professor of interdisciplinary education in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
“Dr. Navarro has been vital to our work in both Honors and CURO, and we wish her the very best as she returns to the classroom and to her research,” Williams said. “We look forward to continuing to work with her in various capacities, especially through her CURO mentorship.”