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Honors Staff

Honors Students

Dr. Michael Howarth

Dr,Michael HowarthDr. Howarth  has taught English at Missouri Southern since August of 2008. He received his BA from James Madison University where he double-majored in English and Secondary Education with a minor in Film Studies. He received his M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Alaska at Anchorage, and he received his Ph.D. from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. His doctoral work examined the effects of Gothicism on children’s literature, specifically the ways in which Erik Erikson’s psychosocial stages of development combine with gothic elements to help children progress through various stages of growth and maturity.

His primary teaching areas include children's literature, young adult literature, film studies, American literature to 1900, creative writing, and 19th- century British literature. In 2011 he was appointed Director of the Honors Program.

Dr. Howarth is a member of the Children's Literature Association, the Southwest Texas Popular Culture and American Culture Association, Sigma Tau Delta, and NCATE (the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education).

His scholarly work has appeared in such publications as Interdisciplinary Humanities, Jura Gentium Cinema, and Magazine Americana. His short stories and essays have appeared in such publications as Cave Region Review, Flashquake, Farmhouse Magazine, Moronic Ox Literary and Cultural Journal, Mud Luscious, and Cybersoleil Literary Journal.

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Rachel Stanley, M.A.

Picture of Rachel StanleyRachel is the Assistant Director of the Honors Program at MSSU. She graduated from the Honors Program at Missouri Southern in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and a political science minor. In 2007, she received her Master of Arts in Theatre History from the University of Missouri–Kansas City.  Her thesis focused on theatre as a ministry tool in the Evangelical Christian church.  After several years in counseling and management, she is back at MSSU.

Rachel teaches University Experience and Honors Forum for Honors students while actively recruiting outstanding students from area high schools. 

Originally from Grove, Oklahoma, she now lives in Joplin with her husband, Matthew, and daughters, Piper and Elizabeth.

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