Exploring Community & Culture course instructors
Dr. Francisco Fernández-Repetto is the Academic Director at IFSA Mexico program in Merida, México. He has been involved in the development and creation of the Exploring Yucatán: Community & Culture, having collaborated in the development, training and implementation of C&C courses for several IFSA program locations, and supported other IFSA initiatives regarding C&C perspective around the world. Currently he is the Instructor of Record for this course.
He also oversees the Directed Research component and teaches the methodology seminar. He advises students through their academic and cultural immersion in both university academic life and Mexican/Yucatecan culture and society to ensure they develop an intercultural appreciation and perspective.
Francisco is a Full Professor of Anthropology at the Autonomous University of Yucatan (UADY), where he actively teaches at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He belongs to the prestigious National System of Researchers (SNI) and is currently involved in student advising and directing research projects, thesis, and dissertations.
Francisco holds a PhD in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Florida, Gainesville, an MA in Sociology from the Autonomous Benito Juárez University in Oaxaca, and a BA in Social Anthropology from the Autonomous University of Yucatán, where he has been a professor for more than thirty years. His research interests span from popular religion to anthropology of higher education, visual anthropology and anthropology of tourism. He has been actively publishing in those areas as well as attending numerous conferences. Recently, he has been teaching different courses from anthropological theory to monographic courses related to the Yucatan.
In addition to those academic positions he was the Dean of the School of Anthropology for eight years, Coordinator of Outreach and Communication at UADY for four years and Director of Graduate Programs in Anthropology. He has also participated in some international education initiatives, such as the Latin America Alfa Tuning Project, supported by the European Union and currently participates in different higher education initiatives at the national level, acting as evaluator in different areas, such as university development, research projects, faculty and academic programs, and institutional evaluations and certifications.
Sharna Bremner is a Senior Student Services Coordinator at for IFSA programs in Adelaide, Australia. She is undertaking her doctoral degree in International Development at the University of Adelaide and holds a Bachelor of Development Studies (Honours) from the same institution. Her research is focused on the intersections of health and education policy in post-conflict developing countries and her publications include “The World Bank’s Health Projects in Timor Leste: The Political Economy of Effective Aid” (Rosser & Bremner, 2015). Sharna assisted in the development of the curriculum for the Exploring Australia: Community & Culture course and has served as the course coordinator and instructor since its inception in early 2016. Sharna has assisted over 1,500 IFSA students in her seven years as a Student Services Coordinator, and her daily activities include the provision of academic and personal support to students, curriculum development for the Exploring Australia: Community & Culture course and engagement with partner and host universities. She is excited to bring her knowledge and experience to the co-instructor role with Exploring Community & Culture in a Global Context.
Nikki Bruckmann is the Associate Director of Student Services at IFSA. Nikki holds an M.A. in social and cultural anthropology. Nikki’s research focused on anthropology of education, looking at intersections of race and education through critical pedagogy, postcolonial theory and community based learning. Upon graduation, Nikki co-founded a local non-profit in the Indianapolis area that provides after school programming engaging youth in community engagement through critical thinking, self-reflection, alliance building and social justice education. She has also served as adjunct professor of anthropology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana for the past four years. Nikki is pleased to combine her experiences and educational background as an instructor of IFSA’s Exploring Community & Culture course.