Director, Summer Rome Program
Associate Professor and Department Chair, Theology
A native of Texas and an alumnus of the University of St. Thomas in Houston, where
he was first introduced to the richness of the Catholic intellectual tradition, Dr.
Rombs completed his doctoral studies in theology at Fordham University in New York
City. After teaching in several colleges on the East Coast, Dr. Rombs came to the
University of Dallas in 2008 with his wife Kathryn and their six children. The primary
area of his research and writing has been patristics, Origen and St. Augustine in
particular. A second area of special academic interest is fundamental theology, the
study of the foundations of theology and 'apologetics,' or the study of the principles
of the credibility of the faith, especially in regard to the contemporary cultural
context. As a Catholic theologian he is most interested in an open and critical engagement
with the questions of our time and the sources of our tradition. And, there is no
place like Rome to pursue the questions of our time and the riches of our tradition.
Associate Professor and Department Chair, History
Susan Hanssen received her graduate degree in history from Rice University in Houston, TX.
She received her undergraduate degree in history from Boston University (summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa). During the summer of 2008 she was adjunct professor for the James
Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation at Georgetown University. She was the 2010-2011
Garwood Fellow at the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at
Adjunct Instructor, English
Associate Professor and Department Chair, Philosophy
Dr. Matthew Walz was born in New York, but grew up mostly in Ohio. He completed undergraduate
studies at Christendom College in Virginia, double-majoring in philosophy and theology
and graduating as the valedictorian of the class of 1995. He did graduate studies
in the School of Philosophy at The Catholic University of America (Washington, DC).
There he earned a doctorate in philosophy by completing a dissertation on Thomas Aquinas'
understanding of free will.
He has been teaching at the college level since 1998. As a graduate student, he taught
for two years at The Catholic University of America. Then he began teaching at Thomas
Aquinas College (Santa Paula, CA), where he remained for eight years. Since 2008 he
has served as a professor in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Dallas
(Irving, TX). In addition, since the summer of 2012, he has served has Director of
Intellectual Formation at Holy Trinity Seminary (Irving, TX). His research and writing
focus primarily on medieval philosophy, ancient philosophy, and philosophical anthropology.
Besides Aquinas, his favorite philosophical authors include Aristotle, Augustine,
Boethius, Anselm, and Bonaventure.
Assistant Professor, Modern Languages (Italian)
Anthony Nussmeier joined the University of Dallas in 2016 as Assistant Professor of
Italian and Director of Italian Language. Before coming to UD, he taught at Kansas
State University and The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Nussmeier enjoys teaching
all levels of Italian language and literature, and has extensive experience teaching
and leading study abroad. He has directed a study abroad program in Todi, Umbria,
founded another program in Orvieto, and taught in Florence. As an undergraduate he
studied at the University of Bologna, the world’s oldest university (founded in 1088),
where he studied Italian politics, history, language, and dialàtt bulgnaiṡ (Bolognese dialect).
As a scholar, Dr. Nussmeier focuses on medieval and Renaissance literature, specifically
Dante, medieval poetry, manuscript culture, and early-book culture. He has written
articles on the tre corone (“three crowns”) of Italian literature—Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio—as well as on the
thirteenth-century poets Guido Guinizzelli and Guittone d'Arezzo, and his work has
appeared, in English and Italian, in journals such as The Medieval Review, Medioevo letterario d’Italia, and Textual Cultures. Dr. Nussmeier has also contributed to the Italian-language textbook Caleidoscopio. His first book, Dante and the Politics of Literary Script, will be published with University of Toronto Press.