Manchester University
Oak Leaves

September 21, 2018


Dr. Michael Staudenmaier.

Photo provided 

Staudenmaier Is New History Professor

Emily Ryder

Michael Staudenmaier, a new professor at Manchester University, joined the history and political science department this year as an assistant professor. 

Staudenmaier achieved a PhD, in history at the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign. His teaching fields include United States history, Latin American history, histories of race and ethnicity and histories of social movements. He explains that he started his career on what he calls a particularly “odd path.” After earning a philosophy degree from a small, liberal arts college, he began working at an alternative high school, Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos Puerto Rican High School, located in the Humboldt Park neighborhood in Chicago, Ill. While there, he was able to engage a variety of talents such as teaching history, bookkeeping, working with budgets, and working as an accountant. “That’s what I thought I wanted to do,” he said. 

Ten years later, Staudenmaier ambitiously enrolled in graduate school, ultimately receiving a PhD in history. With his wife’s encouragement, he was inspired to do what he wants to be doing; he is passionate about teaching, researching and writing about history.

Staudenmaier describes himself while growing up as a “nerd kid.” From enjoying “The Lord of the Rings” to Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea series, he loves to read. Currently, he is writing a book, as that is another one of his hobbies.  His book project dives into his knowledge and work experience of how racial identity has changed throughout time for Puerto Ricans in Chicago, as he can be considered a historian of race and ethnicity. 

The high school he taught and worked for was very “community driven,” and presented him with a question throughout his profession, “how can we make life better for the people in our communities?” inspiring his research and book. 

Aside from working hard on his book, research and teaching history courses, Staudenmaier enjoys spending time with his family. A few of his hobbies are bicycling, being out in the woods, watching the Green Bay Packers, and spending time with his three kids and wife, which are all among his favorite things to do. 

While at Manchester University, Staudenmaier is trying to expand the offerings the history department. Additionally, he explains that he is “excited to be at Manchester; everyone has been wonderful.” He is currently teaching Aspects of American Social History, with a focus on slavery and emancipation, and US history to the Civil War (two sections). In the spring he will add Recent American History to his schedule and focus Aspects of American Social History on U.S. Latino history.