Faculty and Staff

Dr. Karen Becnel Moore:
Dr. Karen Becnel Moore, Associate Professor of Spanish, has been a member of the faculty in the Department of Languages since 1993. She has contributed extensively to the restructuring and revitalization of the Languages Department in terms of encouraging, initiating and developing cutting edge courses, particularly in the Spanish curriculum. She also established and directed the first Study Abroad Program on Xavier’s campus, Xavier International Travel/Study (X-ITS ) {1993-1998}, which welcomed Xavier student participants in all majors. The campus-wide Study Abroad Program is currently under the fulltime auspices of the Center for International and Intercultural Programs (CIIP) and its director, Mr.Torian Lee.

A co-founder of the Afro-Hispanic Review, a first-of-its-kind bilingual literary journal of Afro-Hispanic literature and culture, Dr. Moore is also a member of the Afro Latin American Research Association (ALARA), a life member of the College Language Association (CLA), and has seved as an active member in numerous professional and civic organizations, including the American Indian Education Foundation and the Organization of Africans in the Americas (Organización Pro-Avance de los Pueblos de Ascendencia Africana), which is a coalition of Afro-Hispanics and international citizens dedicated to the improvement of socio-politico-economic conditions of Blacks in Latin America. She has also served as a board member for the Michigan State University Consortium for Inter-Institutional Collaboration for African and Latin American Studies (CICALS).

Dr. Moore’s teaching experience includes the New Orleans Public Schools, Tulane University, and Dillard University. While she has taught all levels and courses in the Spanish curriculum, she currently teaches intermediate Spanish, literature courses, Afro Hispanic Studies and Afro Latin American Culture and Civilizarion courses, which are interdisciplinary courses that include the historical, cultural, and literary development and contributions of the Black presence on the Iberian Peninsula and in the Americas. She has also served as a member of the Xavier University Global Awareness Committee and its Study Abroad Scholarship Committee, and she is still actively involved in advising students about study abroad and career opportunities in international affairs.

 A native of New Orleans, Dr. Moore has traveled and studied extensively throughout the Americas and Europe, and has also traveled through Africa and the Caribbean. She has attended national and international conferences and given numerous presentations. Some of her research interests include Pre-Hispanic civilizations; Afro Hispanic and Afro Latin American history, culture, and literature; and a comparative analysis of the images of children in African Diaspora and mainstream literatures. She received her B.A. in Spanish and French Education from St. Mary’s Dominican College (New Orleans); her M.A. from Tulane University in Spanish with a specialization in Latin American Literature; and her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from The University of Texas at Austin, with a specialization in Spanish and Bilingual Education.

Dr. Moore has also participated in several International Faculty Development Seminars to Spain, Morocco, and Brazil, and she has been instrumental in the development of a cadre of departmental courses on Afro Latin America that are currently taught in French, Spanish, and English. She has garnered numerous fellowships, honors and awards, including receiving both the Xavier University and the Norman C. Francis Excellence in Teaching Awards during the course of her twenty year tenure at Xavier University of LA, once in 1997 and again in 2009, respectively.

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