Dissertation defense schedule

Dissertation Defense Details

  • Videoconference Set Up
  • Tips for Effective Videoconference Dissertations

Submitting your Announcement of Public Defense of the Dissertation

Update: 09-01-21

Defenses may be held entirely in person so long as all University protocols are followed regarding such gatherings.  Hybrid defenses are also allowed, where some attendees are in person and others online, or the defense may take place entirely online.  The dissertation chair has the discretion to approve the option, but is asked to be sensitive of requests for remote attendance.

Create a Videoconference via Teams: If a hybrid or entirely online defense is held, the student will be responsible for setting up the virtual defense through the required platform, Microsoft Teams. 

  • Please have the Dissertator send out invitations to those they would like to attend the session. Encourage the invitees to download the software or app of the platform being used in advance so they have a chance to troubleshoot.
  • Functionality is better over the apps than over web browsers. Chrome and Firefox are optimal if using a desktop or laptop browser. 
  • Videoconference dissertations should be scheduled 30 minutes before the scheduled defense time, allowing the dissertator and their audience ample time to troubleshoot and be acclimated to the virtual space. 
  • Include videoconference link and other meeting details in multiple communication so that it can be easily accessed by the invitees.  
  • For Microsoft Teams, become familiar with the additional features, including the "PolI" capabilities, which not only helps lighten up the event, but allows people to send encouragement to the dissertator.  
  • Advisors should begin with a brief explanation for the audience for how to use the platform. The most important reminder is to tell invitees to mute themselves unless they are speaking to reduce ambient noise and other distractions. Be sure to ask invitees if they are familiar with how to do this and if not, feel free to walk them through the mute feature. If there are audio issues, it can be helpful to turn the video off.
  • Advisors should record the session for the person defending as a memento for this occasion. This is a recommendation and optional. 

2021 Dissertation Defense Schedule 



Nathaniel Helminiak

Program: Mechanical Engineering

Dissertation Director: Dr. John Borg

Date/Time: October 2, 2021, 1:00 p.m.

Defense Location: Microsoft Teams Link

Dissertation Title: "Dynamic Material Properties of Copper Mountain Sandstone Under Uniaxial and Oblique Impact"

Stephen Calme

Program: Religious Studies

Dissertation Director: Danielle Nussberger

Date/Time: October 15, 2021, 12:30 p.m.

Defense Location: Microsoft Teams Link

Dissertation Title: "Biased in a World of Bias: A Cognitive and Spiritual Approach to Knowing Racial Justice"

Dana Fritz

Program: Philosophy

Dissertation Director: Sebastian Luft

Date/Time: October 21, 2021, 4:00 p.m.

Defense Location: Raynor 330B

Dissertation Title: "The Empathetic Autistic: A Phenomenological Look at the Feminine Experience"

Lisa Rose Lamson

Program: History

Dissertation Director: Dr. James Marten

Date/Time: October 27, 2021, 3:30 p.m.

Defense Location: Microsoft Teams Link

Dissertation Title: "Our Duty is to Furnish Such Education: Black Childhood and Schooling in Baltimore City, 1828-1900"




Nicole Mattson

Program: Nursing Science

Dissertation Director: Jennifer Ohlendorf

Date/Time: November 4, 2021, 1:00 p.m.

Defense Location: Microsoft Teams Link

Dissertation Title: "Processes Used By Mothers in Opioid Recovery yo Manage the Needs of the Maternal-Infant Dyad: a Grounded Theory Study"

James Wykes

Program: Theology

Dissertation Director: Joshua Burns

Date/Time: November 4, 2021, 1:00 p.m.

Defense Location: Microsoft Teams Link

Dissertation Title: "Behold the Beasts Beside You: The Adaptation and Alteration of Animals in LXX-Job"