Our Faculty and Staff
Dr. Peter Glanville is an Assistant Professor of Arabic and the Director of the Arabic Flagship Program.
He earned his Ph.D. in Arabic linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin. He holds an MSc in Applied Linguistics, awarded with distinction by the University of Edinburgh. His interest in Arabic began in Oman, where he lived for four years, teaching English at Sultan Qaboos University before continuing his graduate studies. His research focus is Arabic linguistics, and he wrote his doctoral thesis on root and stem morphology and the Arabic verb.
+1 301 405 7325
Dr. Valerie Anishchenkova is an Associate Professor of Arabic and the Co-PI of the Arabic Flagship Program. She is also the PI and Director of the Flagship Culture Initiative.
She received her Ph.D. in Near Eastern Studies from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Prior to joining the University of Maryland, she taught Arabic language, literature, and culture classes and did curricular development work at Tufts University, University of Michigan, and Middlebury Summer School. Dr. Anishchenkova's current research areas are identity studies, modern Arabic literature and culture, film and television studies, and cultural discourses on war. Her book Autobiographical Identities in Contemporary Arab Culture was published in 2014 with the Edinburgh University Press (UK). Dr. Anishchenkova's extensive administrative experiences are in the area of program leadership and curriculum development. Her pedagogical interests focus on designing content courses in English and Arabic that address the issues of cultural competence. She is also core faculty in the Film Studies Program and core affiliate in Comparative Literature.
+1 301 405 7620
Jason DeSanto Jones is the Administrative Director for the Arabic and Persian Flagships, Summer Institute, and Project GO.
He joins us from the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland where he served as Associate Director for the Smith Undergraduate Program. Jason is a two-time graduate of Indiana University Bloomington with a Bachelor's degree in Spanish and Biology, as well as a Master of Science in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration. As a lifelong student of language education, a frequent world traveller, and a former study abroad participant (Universidad de Guanajuato, Mexico - 1999), Jason is tremendously excited to join ARHU-SLLC in its efforts to revolutionize the delivery of language and culture education for students.
+1 301 405 1086
Lianne Berne is the Program Coordinator for the Arabic Flagship Program.
She is a recent graduate of the University of Maryland, where she received her B.A. in Government and Politics with a minor in Arabic Studies. She is also a recent alumna of the UMD Arabic Flagship Program, having completed her Capstone year studying abroad in Meknes, Morocco. Lianne has a level 3 (Superior) language proficiency in Arabic, with experience in Modern Standard, Egyptian, and Moroccan dialects. She is interested in improving intensive study programs for Arabic learners through educational institutions as well as broader public policy decisions.
+1 301 405 4742
Joseph Bass is the Coordinator for the Flagship Culture Initiative.
He speaks both Portuguese and Spanish and has spent time living in countries such as Brazil, Argentina, and Costa Rica After graduating from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill with a degree in anthropology and Spanish, he began his career in education as an ESL teacher in Brazil where he taught for two years. Upon returning to the US, he completed his master's degree in international education. Joseph has also taught ESL at the Brazilian Consulate of Miami and on several college campuses in the Miami area. Joseph's experience includes work in the nonprofit field as well, where he gained experience in grant report writing and translating for programs in Latin America on education, global health, human rights, and development. He also previously served as the International Student Registrar for Anne Arundel County Public Schools in Maryland. Joseph also comes to us with experience in federal government contract management, where he previously set up and managed foreign language training programs for military personnel throughout the US in over 20 foreign languages.
+1 301 405 9266
Lutf Alkebsi is a Senior Lecturer in the Arabic department.
He received his M.A. in Arabic from Sana’a University (Yemen) in 2006. Lutf comes to us from Tufts University where he was a lecturer in Arabic (2009-2010). Prior to Tufts, he was a lecturer in Arabic at Brandeis University (2006-2009), where he taught a variety of courses on Arabic language and culture. He was also among the core faculty at Middlebury Arabic Summer School for eight summer semesters. He brings to us extensive pedagogical experience in all levels of Arabic (beginning, intermediate, and advanced), as well as his artistry in Arabic calligraphy. His teaching experiences overseas include diverse Arabic courses at the Center for Arabic Language and Eastern Studies in Yemen.
+1 301 405 9862
Zein El-Amine is a Lecturer in the Arabic department.
He was born and raised in Lebanon and has lived and studied in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain before coming to the US to work as a Civil Engineer. He worked on major airport construction projects for 20 years before pursuing his MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Maryland. He has taught creative writing, global literature and professional writing and led literary study abroad trips to Egypt and Ireland. He now teaches full time at the Arabic Department, as Advisor and faculty member and continues to teach Global Literature and Social Change in the English department. Zein is also a published poet and writer.
+1 301 405 1606
Samah Al-Salami is a Lecturer in the Arabic department.
She joined the University of Maryland in fall 2018 after previously teaching at Brandeis University (2007-2009) and Tufts University (2009-2010). Originally from Yemen, she holds a B.A. in English teaching from Sana’a University’s Faculty of Education and taught Arabic as a foreign language for two years at the University of Science and Technology, Center of Arabic Language and Eastern Studies. She has a passion for teaching culture and brings this enthusiasm to the classroom through cultural activities like cooking different regional cuisines and bringing in traditional clothing from the Arab world. She always encourages her students to communicate in Arabic both in and out of the classroom to enhance their learning.
+1 301 405 4926
Sayed Elsisi is an Assistant Professor in the Arabic department.
He came to UMD from Harvard University (2007-2010), where he taught advanced courses, including: “Arabic Cultural, literary and Political Readings.” He has previously taught at The American University in Cairo (2000-2007), in the CASA Program, Modern and Classical Arabic Literature courses, in addition to Advanced courses of Arabic MSA and Egyptian Colloquial in Arab Cinema. Dr. Elsisi earned his PhD with the first honor degree for his dissertation “The Arabic Prose Poem: Study in the Poetics of the Genre” at Cairo University, where he also received his BA (1993) and MA (awarded as the best dissertation in Arabic Literature, 2000). He worked as a researcher and an editorial assistant for “Alif" (Journal of Comparative Poetics) 2000-2007. His publications (in Arabic) include: "Alluring Text and Playful Reading" (2005), "Egypt: Culture and Society", a textbook for the CASA program (2006), and a number of articles on the Arabic novel and poetry: "Sufi Vision to the Poetic Language in Salah Abdul Sabour's Poetry"(2003), "Absence as Strategy in Sa'di Yussuf's Poetry: An Intertextuality Approach (2001), "The Realism in Conjuncture of al-Ard novel"(1994). Dr. Elsisi is currently working on a project to study The Omitted Genres throughout the history of Arabic criticism – questioning the "Poetics" in classical and modern Arabic literary criticism.
+1 301 405 0197