Versatility, experience are hallmarks of NMC faculty

Faculty members of the Northern Marianas College’s Social Sciences and Fine Arts Department, from left, Tim Baker, Eugene Foels, Barry Wicksman, department chair Thomas Sharts, Guadalupe Robinson, and Barry Wonenberg. (NMC)

Faculty members of the Northern Marianas College’s Social Sciences and Fine Arts Department, from left, Tim Baker, Eugene Foels, Barry Wicksman, department chair Thomas Sharts, Guadalupe Robinson, and Barry Wonenberg. (NMC)

The full-time Social Sciences and Fine Arts faculty members at Northern Marianas College offer students an array of versatility and experiences in their instruction for those students that take general education and electives courses the department offers to assist them in earning bachelor or associate degrees. The Social Sciences and Fine Arts Department at Northern Marianas College offers courses in history, geography, political science, sociology, psychology, college success, ceramics, drawing, painting, etc.

Thomas D. Sharts (M.Ed.) is the department chair of the Social Sciences and Fine Arts Department and also teaches sociology and college success. He brings an array of experiences to the classroom as a result of his work in the fields of social work, business and higher education. He also has self-published a number of books related to sociology and self-help and also writes freelance business articles for the Marianas Business Journal and Guam Business Journal.

Barry Wonenberg (M.Ed., MFA) is the department’s fine arts instructor and teaches courses in ceramics, drawing, painting and introduction to art. He has been employed with NMC for 25 years and recently was appointed as a member of the Northern Marianas Humanities Council. Also, over the past several years, he was twice invited to attend an international sculpture competition to create monumental sculpture in China. His sculpture and ceramic works are displayed at various locations throughout the island.

Barry Wicksman (M.Ed. and MLS.) is the department’s Asian and Micronesian history instructor and teaches courses in geography, Chinese history, Japanese history, and Northern Marianas history. Wicksman was NMC’s 2014 Instructor of the Year and has written two books. He also has lived and worked in Japan, Taiwan, China, Korea, and the Philippines. Moreover, Wicksman had worked as an English as a Second Language instructor with the college for 14 years and speaks three different Asian languages: Japanese, Chinese and Thai.

Guadalupe Robinson (M.A.) serves as the department’s primary college success instructor and formerly was an English instructor at the college. She has experience as news writer, working for the Pacific Daily News in Guam and with the Marianas Variety on Saipan.  She also has been involved with reporting historical events associated with Covenant talks beginning in the early 1970’s, and in 2013, presented a scholarly paper titled: The Political Status Talks Leading to Commonwealth Status: A Personal Perspective.

Eugene Foels (M.S.) is the department’s American and world history instructor. He teaches courses in American history, world history, political science and sport and society. He has published two sports history books in reference to local Western New York sports history and currently is working on another book related to earmarking the greatest athletes in Tonawanda High School history.

The Social Sciences department also recently hired Timothy Baker (MSW) as its general psychology instructor. Baker has experience in delivering social work and counseling services in the private sector and higher education.

According to Sharts, he is impressed with the versatility and skills the department’s full-time faculty offer. He stated:  “I…believe their unique skills, experiences and knowledge serve as a vital educative and socializing mechanism in helping NMC students gain important abilities in areas associated with work-related skills such as general education knowledge, critical thinking skills and problem-solving skills. Likewise, our full-time faculty looks forward to serving the future traditional and non-traditional students in order to help them achieve their education and vocational goals.”

For more information about the Social Sciences and Fine Arts Department contact Sharts at 670-237-6761 or email (NMC)

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