Merrill to Serve Two More Years as Department Chair

Professor Jason Merrill will continue to serve as Chair of the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian, and African Languages for an additional two years, or until August 15, 2020. Merrill has been serving as Interim Chair of the department since August 15, 2017.

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Dr. Jason Merrill


“This past year as Interim Chair, Dr. Merrill has guided the Department with the expertise and vision of a language scholar and is well-versed in the issues that shape today’s programs in linguistics and languages,” said Christopher P. Long, Dean of the College of Arts & Letters. “His selection by the Department to continue in the capacity as Chair is a credit to his work to create a transparent, collaborative, and equitable atmosphere, in which all faculty may flourish in their respective paths to intellectual leadership.”

As Chair of the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian, and African Languages, Merrill will continue to serve as the chief representative of the department and is responsible for educational, research, and service programs; budgetary and personnel matters; and physical facilities.

“I am very honored to be reappointed as Chair of the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian, and African Languages for an additional two years,” Merrill said. “I look forward to supporting my colleagues as we offer exciting courses for our undergraduate and graduate students and continue to conduct important research in the many areas related to languages and cultures represented in our diverse department.”

This past year as Interim Chair, Dr. Merrill has guided the Department with the expertise and vision of a language scholar and is well-versed in the issues that shape today’s programs in linguistics and languages.

Christopher P. Long, Dean 

Merrill is a Professor of Russian and has taught Russian language courses at all levels and various subjects, including IAH, Russian cinema and 20th-century literature, and leads a study abroad program in Volgograd, Russia. He also has served as Director of the Kathryn Wasserman Davis School of Russian at Middlebury College since 2010. 

An author of Russian-language textbooks, English- and Russian-language pedagogical works, and scholarly articles on Russian literature and film, Merrill received his Ph.D. in Russian Literature from the University of Kansas. Before coming to MSU, he taught at Drew University in Madison, New Jersey, where he directed the university’s Russian program. He also taught at Dartmouth College.