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Meet the Faculty & Staff

Andrew Seidler



PhD, Education Psychology & Research (in progress)
MS, Education & Social Policy, Northwestern University
BA, History, Colby College

Andrew Seidler has been Director of UT’s Office of National Scholarships & Fellowships (ONSF) since January 2016. During his tenure as ONSF’s director, UT has emerged nationally as a Fulbright Student top-producing research university and a consistent producer of Boren, Critical Language, and Schwarzman Scholars. In that time, UT has also had two Rhodes Scholars, its first-ever Mitchell Scholar and Gates Cambridge Scholar, and, in 2020, a nation-best five Goldwater Scholars. Andrew received the Chancellor’s Ready for the World Citation in 2016, in part for developing and leading UT’s first-ever study abroad program to Cuba. Prior to working at UT, Andrew was an editor, freelance book reviewer, and newspaper reporter. He was awarded for his news- and feature-writing by both the Illinois Associated Press Editors Association and the Illinois Press Association.

Michael Handelsman

Senior Faculty Director Emeritus


PhD, Romance Languages & Certificate in Latin American Studies, University of Florida
MA, Romance Languages, University of Florida
BA, Spanish, Gettysburg College

Dr. Michael Handelsman is Senior Faculty Director Emeritus of the Office of National Scholarships & Fellowships (ONSF). He has been on the University of Tennessee faculty since 1976. Michael’s principal teaching and research interests are Latin American narrative, Ecuadorian literature and culture, concepts of national identity, women writers, literary journals, Afro Hispanic literature, globalization, and decolonization. In addition to having received an Organization of American States research grant and six Fulbright fellowships, he has been a Distinguished Professor in the Humanities since 1987. Michael was formerly Director of the Global Studies interdisciplinary program at the University of Tennessee and also directed numerous service-learning project in which students with advanced proficiency in Spanish worked with local Latinx children and their families in the Knox County community.

De Furio headshot

Assistant Director


PhD, English Literature, University of Alabama
MA, English Literature, Villanova University
BA, Liberal Arts, Thomas Aquinas College


Dr. Laura De Furio is Assistant Director of the Office of National Scholarships & Fellowships (ONSF). Laura formerly taught in the English Department at the University of Alabama, tutored in the Writing Center, and administered thesis and dissertation submissions in the Graduate School. Her research and teaching interests include early modern British women’s writing, archival theory, manuscript culture, and politics. Her book project, Femme Covert: Ciphered Politics in Early Modern Women’s Writing, 1640-1680, offers a literary history of women’s secret politicking recovered from neglected archival materials, including cipher letters, petitions, biographical fragments, and gossip. Her work has been supported by grants from the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC. Laura started her career as a high school teacher in the School District of Philadelphia (PA) as a Philadelphia Teaching Fellow.

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