Scenes of Green Mountain College
Home > Tom Williams

Thomas Williams Ph.D.

Professor of History
Program Director, History
Division Chair, Humanities, Education, and Art

Dunton 111
One Brennan Circle
Poultney, VT 05764-1199
Email Address:
Phone: 802-287-8332; Fax: 802-287-8080

Green Mountain College's dedication to preparing students to understand and engage their natural and social environment makes it a good fit for Dr. Thomas Williams. His work with history, international programs and international students has long focused on creating learning experiences which connect students to the world around them. History, in particular, serves to give students background information with which they can understand why things are the way they are. International experience acquaints students with unfamiliar worlds, thus often shattering self-generated or cultural stereotypes of others and enabling students to come to a more mature notion of the fundamentals of human life and experience. Dr. Williams' present research focuses on the American community in Shanghai between 1843-1949 and seeks to examine a distinct social community of Americans who established themselves in China. Amid one of the world's most unique built environments, these Americans attempted to build community despite the tenuous nature of their geographical sense of place.

Before coming to Green Mountain College, Dr. Williams was a member and chair of the History department at St. Andrews College and Director of St. Andrews Program in China. He has been a summer fellow at the Newberry Library in Chicago, Director of a Title VI Grant for Asian Studies, and a faculty member of the History department at Emory University. Tom enjoys gardening, baseball, reading, travel, and collecting Asian travel accounts of British and American citizens from the late 19th and 20th centuries. His most memorable experience has to be the period he spent in Beijing in 1989 during the events that led to the Tiananmen massacre.

B.A., Political Science, History with Honors, University of Mississippi, 1969
M.A., History, University of Mississippi, 1972
Ph.D., Ohio State University, 1977

Teaching and Mentoring
Courses Taught
U.S. to 1877
US after 1877
US since 1940/5
Society and Thought in Modern America
Makers of American Society
History of Poverty in America
Mass Culture in the US
Youth and Culture in Modern America
Civil War and Reconstruction
History Senior Seminar
US Depression and War
Freshman Honors Seminar
Constitutional Law and American Society

The U.S. and the Vietnam War
Modern Chinese History
Economic and Environmental Problems in China
Perspective on the Environment: China
Teaching Internship: China

St. Andrews Senior Gen Ed (Global Issues)
St. Andrews Sophomore Gen Ed (Christianity and Culture)
American Views of the Environment
Contemporary Social Issues
Dimensions of Nature
A Delicate Balance

World History Since 1500
Europe Since 1900

Society and Thought in Modern America

Dr. Williams has long been active in preparing students for graduate and professional schools. He has been a member of the law school advisor board at Green Mountain and at St Andrews College. He also acts as the advisor to all in-coming international students at Green Mountain. China has played a special role in Dr. Williams teaching and mentoring. He was resident professor at Beijing Normal College spring semester 1989 and in spring semester 1995. He was resident professor at Nanjing University spring semester 2000. During all of those residencies in China, Dr. Williams taught and advised American students studying in China.

Undergraduate Research Projects
Dr. Williams has been involved in numerous student history honors theses at Emory University, St Andrews College and at Green Mountain College. In addition, he oversaw the senior and freshman honors projects of Green Mountain students in the College Honors Program from 1996-1999.

Research Interests
1. Modern United States history
2. History of Americans in Asia
3. The Shanghai American community

Selected Publications and Presentations
Ohio Academy of History, 1977, Paper, "ADC in Mississippi: A Means of Social Control".
Southern Historical Association, 1978, Commentator, "Public Health in the Urban South".
American Historical Association, 1978, Presentation of Dissertation, "Recent Doctoral Research".
Consultant to Conference, "Children in America: Past, Present and Future", Sponsored by the High Museum of Art and Emery University in observance of the International Year of the Child, 1979, Chairperson session: "Value Perspective in Child Welfare, "Workshop organizer: "Day Care in America".
Consultant, 1978-79, 'Children in America", Film, NEH.
Consultant with Professor Charles Strickland, Oral History Project for Childhood in America, 1979-1979.
Consultant, Grant, Georgia Committee on Humanities. "Who Speaks for the Child? Parent, Professionals and Child Welfare".
American Educational Research Association, April 1979, Address, "Researching Public and Private Children".
Georgia Phi Alpha Theta Meeting, May 1979, Address, "Researching Public Welfare in the South".
Article: 'Rural America in an Urban Age 1945-1960" Modern America OSU Press.
Organizer Forum: "Vietnam Considered" with Francis Fitzgerald, General William Westmoreland, and George Paige, 1983.
Producer, "Vietnam in Perspective" for Emory Today, WANX TV, Atlanta, G.A.,1985.
Southeastern Asian Studies Association Paper, "Teaching Vietnam," 1985.
Director, Title VI Grant, Asian Studies, 1990.
Article, "Chinese Nights, Vietnamese Days", International Social Science Review, Fall 1993.
Winterterm Course 1994: "Thailand and Laos in the Indochina War".
Resident Professor Beijing Normal College, Spring Semester 1995. Taught Economic and Environmental Issues in Modern China.
American Historical Association Institution Membership: 1987-1995; Asia Network, current institutional representative.
Member of the Board, Vermont Council on the Arts and Sciences.
Green Mountain Liason Officer to New England Accreditation Association.
Resident Professor Nanjing University, Spring Semester 2000.
Paper, "The American Girls Controversy, 1906-1907," New York Asian Studies Association Conference, October 2002. Paper, "The American Civil War: The View From China," New York Asian Studies Association Conference, October 2003.
Presentation, "China in the 1980s," Rutland Regional Conference on China, October 2003.
Article, "Two American Sailors in the Chinese Imperial Service," forthcoming: The American Neptune, 2004.
Paper, "The Case for Burgevine," New England Historical Association, April 2006.
Paper, "The American Settlement in Shanghai," New England Asian Studies Association, October 2007.

Activities, Honors and Recognitions
Phi Alpha Theta
EPDA fellowship
Finalist, Graduate Research Award, Ohio State
Newberry Fellowship, Summer Institute
Sears Teaching Award 1990
Graduation Speaker, elected by Senior Class, 1994
Teacher of the Year, Green Mountain College, 1996

© 2015 Green Mountain College | One Brennan Circle | Poultney, Vermont 05764 | 800-776-6675 | MyGMC Login | Email Login