Northwestern University in Qatar (NU-Q) has appointed Kathleen M. Hewett-Smith as director of its Liberal Arts Program and professor in residence, effective August 1. 

Hewett-Smith brings to NU-Q an extensive record of leadership in the liberal arts and international education. She has served as associate dean of international studies and professor of literature at Bard College in New York, as founding dean of arts, humanities, and social sciences at the Asian University for Women in Bangladesh, and, most recently, as head of the Department of English at the American University of Sharjah. 

During her career, Hewett-Smith has taught courses in world and South Asian literatures, literary theory, contemporary culture, literature of the Middle Ages, academic and critical writing, and others. She has developed expertise in South Asian studies with a particular focus on transnational identity in South Asian literatures.

Hewett-Smith’s research output includes a book on William Langland’s Piers Plowman and she has been published in The Yearbook of Langland StudiesStudies in the Age of Chaucer, The Chaucer Yearbook, and Medieval England: An Encyclopedia, among others. Recently, she has written for Interventions: International Journal of Post-Colonial Studies and South Asian Review and is working on a book, Aesthetics, Politics and the Long Post-Colonial Novel.

“Dr. Hewett-Smith’s expertise in English and literary studies brings much needed strength to our Liberal Arts faculty where student demand is high. Her rich background in academic leadership as well as serious scholarship which will greatly benefit our Liberal Arts Program as it continues its upward trajectory,” said Everette E. Dennis, dean and CEO of NU-Q. 

Her professional awards include a Mellon Foundation Digital Humanities Summer Institute Award, a grant from the AMICAL Digital Humanities Institute, a Human Rights Fellowship from the Oak Foundation, and a Title VI U.S. Department of Education Research Grant in India. 

Hewett-Smith received a PhD and MA in English at the University of California, Irvine, and a BA in English at the University of Colorado, Boulder.