Matthew T. Herbst is an Associate Teaching Professor at the University of California San Diego where he serves as Faculty Director of the Making of the Modern World, a general education world history program, and Associate Faculty Director of the Programs Abroad Office. Prof. Herbst was a founding faculty member of UC San Diego’s Global Seminars in 2008 and has developed and led programs in Turkey, England, France, Thailand and Cambodia. As a proponent of experiential learning, Prof. Herbst initiated a service and research sequence in 2012, leading disability-focused programs in Turkey in 2013 and 2014, and offers quarterly wilderness seminars in the deserts and mountains of California, working collaboratively with Outback Adventures. Attentive to the links between higher and pre-collegiate education, Prof. Herbst serves on the Board of Directors of a public school in Chula Vista and founded “Istanbul Between East and West: Crossroads of History,” a Summer Institute for middle and high school teachers (2013, 2015), funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, and is developing a new teacher institute for 2017. Prof. Herbst serves on campus committees addressing disability, the first-year college experience, public service, and educational policy, and is Board chair of the Burke lectureship. He has received numerous awards for teaching, including a UCSD Distinguished Teaching Award in 2015. Dr. Herbst is deeply committed to public education, of which he was a beneficiary from kindergarten in New York to his B.A. in History, Greek, and Latin from Binghamton University and Ph.D. in History from the University of Michigan.
On the personal side: Before deciding on an academic career, Dr. Herbst explored a variety of fields, including law enforcement and private investigation, the US National Park Service, social service, and religious ministry. He is the grandson of an immigrant from Guyana who married a sanitation worker in New York City, whose own parents emigrated from Ireland. He is the son of a Vietnam-era veteran from East Harlem and a junior high school secretary from Queens, NY, and is married to the daughter of Filipino immigrants. Dr. Herbst and his siblings are his family’s first generation to go to college. Raised in New York’s Hudson Valley, he was once a high school wrestler, college boxer, and avid runner, and now enjoys time with family, strolls in nature, and volunteering with high school students.
Making of the Modern World Classes: MMW11 Pre-History and Ancient Foundations, MMW12 Classical and Medieval Traditions, MMW13 New Ideas and Cultural Encounters (1200-1750), MMW14 Revolution, Industry, Empire (1750-1917), MMW200 Graduate Pedagogy Seminar. Freshman Seminars: Pleasure or Duty: Choosing a Guide for Life, Desire & the Spiritual Life, God-Satan-and the Desert (Wilderness Seminar at Anza Borrego Desert State Park), Sacred Mountain (Wilderness Seminar at Mt. San Jacinto State Park), Desert Splendor (interdisciplinary wilderness seminar at Joshua Tree National Park),the First Year Experience, International Student Transition. Other Courses: Wilderness and Human Values, Byzantine and Ottoman Constantinople, Mystical Traditions, Byzantine Empire, Ancient World, Trade and World History, Eastern Christianity, World History Seminar, Preparatory Seminar on Istanbul, Research Seminar on Istanbul.