Dr. Derek Rivard
Dr. Derek Andrew Rivard graduated Magna Cum Laude and received the Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Religion, with a minor in English, from Ripon College of Wisconsin. While attending Ripon, he was awarded numerous scholarships and inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, and in August of 1993 became a Loyola Fellow at Fordham University of New York City. There he earned his Master of Arts in History in 1994. While working toward his doctoral degree in Medieval History, under the mentorship of Dr. Richard F. Gyug, he taught courses for three years at Fordham in medieval and modern European history as a Teaching Fellow and Senior Teaching Fellow, worked as a copy editor for the ancient- and medieval-history journal Traditio, and received a Dissertation Fellowship in 1998 to complete work on his doctoral dissertation. He completed his doctoral dissertation, Sanctifying the World: Ritual Blessings in Medieval Religion and Culture, in August of 2000, and received his Ph.D. in May of 2001. He served as a temporary Visiting Professor of History at Central Michigan University for the 2000-2001 academic year, where he taught undergraduate and graduate courses in European history. He came to Cottey in the Fall of 2001 as an Assistant Professor of History and Political Science. He is currently an Associate Professor of History, and teaches courses in European history, as well as mythology and literature, and film studies.
In addition to his teaching duties, Dr. Rivard pursues an active research agenda and participates in scholarly conferences on a regular basis, and is a leading American scholar on the subject of liturgical benedictions of the medieval Church. He is the author of Blessing the World: Ritual and Lay Piety in Medieval Religion, published in 2008 by Catholic University of America Press, and in addition to religious history he has also published widely in scholarly journals dedicated to medieval social history, the history of medieval England, liturgical and ritual studies, and history pedagogy.