SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Dr. William E. DeMars, professor and chair of the Department of Government and International Affairs at Wofford College, is among 20 college professors from across the state recognized recently by the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (SCICU) consortium. The 2017 Excellence in Teaching awards are presented annually to one nominee from each of the state’s private colleges.

Honorees received a $3,000 professional development stipend during an awards dinner held April 4, 2017, in Columbia to celebrate higher education and teaching excellence at SCICU’s member independent colleges and universities.

“Bill DeMars brings the real issues of the world and world politics to his classroom, teaching and guiding students through the complex field of government and international affairs, preparing them for their future outside of Wofford College. He is an excellent teacher and mentor to students and colleagues alike,” says Dr. Mike Sosulski, provost at Wofford, says. “Bill is very deserving of this great honor, and it reflects the respect and appreciation we all have for him.”

Collectively, the 2017 Excellence in Teaching award recipients have substantial professional depth and knowledge, and their areas of teaching include the sciences, religion, political science, criminal justice, languages and the arts, SCICU’s website says. DeMars, who received his Ph.D. in international relations from the University of Notre Dame, teaches courses in Middle East politics, American foreign policy, the politics of the United Nations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in world politics, nuclear weapons, leadership and globalization in South Carolina, and the “new space race.”

As chair of the Department of Government, DeMars spearheaded efforts to create a new major and minor in international affairs in 2016, leading also to the renaming of the department. He also has contributed to many conversations and projects to renew the practice of liberal education in a changing context.

Before joining the Wofford faculty in 2001, DeMars taught international relations at undergraduate and graduate levels at Earlham College; the American University in Cairo, Egypt; and the University of Notre Dame.

His publications have addressed humanitarian politics, the changing face of war in Africa, intelligence issues, NGOs and international relations theory. He has written numerous articles and has published two books, “NGOs and Transnational Networks: Wild Cards in World Politics” (London: Pluto Press, 2005) and as co-editor with Dennis Dijkzeul, “The NGO Challenge for International Theory” (New York: Routledge, 2015).