College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences > About > Initiatives > Civics Initiative > Who We Are

Who We Are

​The DePaul Civics Initiative is hosted by the College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences, but welcomes participation by faculty, student and staff from across the university.

Leadership Team

Molly W. Andolina

Molly W. Andolina is an associate professor of Political Science at DePaul University. Her field of expertise includes public opinion and youth political engagement. She has published work on a host of topics, including the political activism of Millennials, the relationship between faith and civic engagement among college students, how issues impact college student activism, Americans’ attitudes toward gay rights, the challenges of survey research measurement, and public opinion on the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Most recently, her research has focused on the democratic skills engendered by a high school action civics program. Dr. Andolina graduated from Emory University with a B.A. in History and received both her M.P.P. (1992) and her Ph.D. (1997) from Georgetown University. While a research director at the Pew Research Center, she received training in quantitative and qualitative public opinion research, including surveys, elite interviewing and focus groups. As an expert in the field, she has worked with The National Academy of Sciences Committee on National Statistics and NBC News.

Ben Epstein

Ben Epstein is an associate professor of Political Science at DePaul University. He studies and teaches about American political behavior broadly with a specific focus on media, technology and politics, race and ethnicity, and American political development (APD), which explores changes in American politics over time. His research examines changes in political communication impacted by new technology ranging from the printing press to social media platforms, along with the complexities of the evolving relationship between the internet and political life, including e-government and regulating disinformation. Dr. Epstein graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a B.S. in secondary education and taught history and government in high school for six years. He completed an M.A. in Political Science at Brooklyn College (2005), before receiving his Ph.D. (2011) from the City University of New York Graduate Center in Political Science. His time teaching social studies in high school classes in NYC and San Diego was formative in how he thinks about high quality civics education at all levels. 

Affiliated Support Team

Margaret Storey is Professor of History and has served as Associate Dean for New Initiatives in the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences since 2017. In the latter capacity, she has overseen multiple large grants for pedagogical and scholarly development for faculty and students in the College and has designed and launched a range of programs and processes to support the activities funded by those grants. She received her Ph.D. in United States History from Emory University in 1999 and has published books and articles about the American South during the Civil War. Her most recent article, “War’s Domestic Corollary: Union Occupation Households in the Civil War South,” appeared in LeeAnn Whites’ and Lisa Tendrich Frank’s From Home Front to Battlefield: The Civil War as a Household War in 2019.

John Shanahan s Associate Dean and Professor of English in DePaul's College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. As Director of Liberal Studies, he oversees DePaul’s general education program and college assessment. Recent initiatives include new university-wide assessment processes and expansion of STEM content in the core. His most recent research appeared in Digital Humanities Quarterly in 2020, and has received support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Lyrasis, and HathiTrust.