Department gains new professor

Nick Ulrich, Staff Writer

Julia Baxter
Dr. Mehmet Balkanlioglu took over classes for former WSC professor Dr. Todd Greene.

When coming back to school for the Fall 2019 semester, students in the sociology department were shocked to learn that Dr. Todd Greene, a professor who had become a favorite of many students, would no longer be teaching at Wayne State. Greene was expected to teach five classes in the sociology department, including Social Theory, a 500/400-level class.

Along with two service-learning classes, Greene had also been scheduled to teach sociology of mental health. Emily Morrison, a senior with a sociology minor, had already purchased the required textbook and was preparing for class. Morrison took social welfare with Dr. Greene in Spring of 2018 and was looking forward to another semester with him.

“He was a very passionate teacher,” Morrison said. “He felt comfortable sharing personal experiences that really added to his lectures. I was worried that my class was going to get cancelled, and that I was going to have to rearrange my schedule.”

The sociology department fortunately hired Dr. Mehmet Balkanlioglu after Greene’s disappearance. Balkanlioglu, an experienced professor, has experience in researching as well. In addition to presentations at Georgetown University and a conference for the American Sociological Association, Balkanlioglu’s research in sociology, education and psychology has also been published in many journals, including the Journal of International Social Research.

“I have over ten years of both teaching and research experiences in diverse classrooms in different departments,” Balkanlioglu said. “I have two books and many articles in addition to awards, presentations at conferences, television and radio programs, interviews at newspapers and weekly magazines.”

Balkanlioglu felt his qualifications made him a good fit to fill in for a unique set of classes.

“I will be teaching Social Theory, Social Welfare, and Sociology of Mental Health,” Balkanlioglu said. “I am excited to teach them all.”

Though Morrison considered Greene’s departure unfortunate, she expressed her enthusiasm for the upcoming semester.

“I haven’t met the new professor yet, but I am excited to get to know him and his style of teaching,” Morrison said.