Paying Tribute To Hunger

Full Title: 
Paying Tribute To Hunger
Lisa McNeal
Day/Time Taught: 
R 11:00 – 12:15 pm
Course Number: 

What does it mean to be hungry? Students will seek the answer to this question by creating and sharing stories, images, videos, and participating in service project at a local restaurant. Using the best-selling novels The Hunger Games and Dreams of Joy as course texts, students will explore the concepts of hunger and famine from historical, political, biological, sociological, and feminist perspectives. Through readings, documentaries, and service learning, they will critically examine the different aspects of hunger and its effect on people, communities, and countries. Course activities will include reflective and academic writing, online discussions, group projects, and service learning. Unlike Katniss and Peeta, the protagonists of The Hunger Games, students will not participate in a reaping or fight to the death; however, they will wrestle with tough questions surrounding the concept of hunger.

NOTE: This class is taught 50 percent online.

Instructor Bio: 

Dr. Lisa McNeal is an instructional developer and adjunct instructor at Appalachian State University.  She works closely with faculty as they integrate technology into teaching, learning, and scholarship.  She holds an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and a Graduate Certificate in Women’s Studies at Appalachian State University.  She also has a B.A. degree in Journalism from Samford University and an M.S. in Instructional Systems from Florida State University.  Dr. McNeal’s research interests include hybrid course design, feminist theory, gender and technology, qualitative research methods, and leadership theory.

Dr. McNeal has worked in higher education since 1999 and taught first year students since 2007.  She has taught seminars focused on student success, social media, and more recently, issues related to hunger.  Her classroom teaching style is influenced by her love of technology, popular culture, and writing.  Every week she leads the students in discussions, collectively seeking answers to questions sparked by course readings. She challenges students to rethink the concepts of hunger, power, social class, and gender by asking questions.  Using technology to enhance learning is also part of her teaching philosophy.  Taking guidance from José Bowen (2011), she thinks that technology is most powerfully used outside the classroom as a way to increase interaction with students inside the classroom.  As a result, her classes follow a hybrid design that includes a blend of face-to-face and online activities.  By using online discussions and other assignments, she creates more time for hands-on activities during face-to-face class meetings.  In other words, Dr. McNeal’s face-to-face classes are reserved for special interactions or what Caulfield (2011) calls a “provocative exploration of the discipline by teacher and learner” (p. 4). 

Dr. McNeal’s life interests include reading dystopian novels, playing music, shopping at thrift stores, stumbling through Zumba, walking on the Greenway, and dreaming of her next beach vacation. 


Bowen, J. A. (2012). Teaching naked: How moving technology out of your college classroom will improve student learning. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Caulfield, J. (2011). How to design and teach a hybrid course: Achieving student-centered learning through blended classroom, online, and experiential activities. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.

Contact FYS

The First Year Seminar is part of the General Education Program located in Anne Belk Hall, Room 250.

Phone: 828-262-2028

Our mailing address:
First Year Seminar
ASU Box 32065
Appalachian State University
Boone, NC 28608

Director of First Year Seminar:
Dr. Martha McCaughey

QEP Global Learning