Noriko Ito Krenn, Ph.D, Academic Director
Dr. Krenn is the founder of this summer program and a graduate of Doshisha University. She teaches Japanese language at the University of New Orleans and Tulane University. In her free time, she enjoys visiting mountains and lakes. Her favorite foods are seafood gumbo and メロンパン (not together).
2024 Courses: JAPN 2001
David Rands, Ph.D, Professor of History
Dr. David Rands is a Professor of History and Coordinator of Asian Studies Program at the Austin Peay State University. He has studied at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan for his Masters in International Relations. Dr. Rands is very excited to be joining us in Japan again this summer to share amazing experiences and learning with his students in Kyoto.
2024 Courses: HIST 3992 & HUMS 2090
Lisa Verner, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of English and Director, UNO Women's Center
Lisa Verner has taught on UNO Study Abroad Programs in France, Austria, Italy, Czechia, Costa Rica, and Japan, where she served as Academic Director of the UNO-Japan Summer Study Abroad Program in Kyoto in 2010. Although her doctorate is in medieval European literature, her primary interest in that area is monsters and monstrosities; she is the author of The Epistemology of the Monstrous in the Middle Ages. This preoccupation has led to her investigation of yokai, oni, and yurei in Japanese folklore for her class When Yokai Attack: Monsters, Spirits and Fantastical Creatures in Japanese Folklore and Culture. Her position as Women's Center Director and Women's & Gender Studies faculty member gave rise to her interest in Samurai and Geisha: Japanese Gender Roles in Literature. She is very much looking forward to returning to Kyoto in 2024 for the culture, the natural and architectural beauty, and the pork buns that can only be found at the Kyoto train station.
2024 Courses: ENG 2091/4391 (P1), ENG 2091/4391 (P2) & WGS 4090
Jennifer Torres, Program Director, UNO-Japan
Jennifer was a student of the UNO-Japan program back in the summer of 2010. She has always wished for work involving Japan, and to share her knowledge and love of Japan. Now that wish is a reality, as she comes back to the UNO-Japan program years later as its Program Director. She is also involved in the Japan Society of New Orleans as their Vice President, and helps run the organization's event programming such as the Kwaidan Book Club and Krewe of Japan Podcast. Jennifer is looking forward to sharing the same experiences she had on the program with other students. In her personal time, she plays with her shiba inu and snacks on sweets.