Professor David Rodgers

            If you haven't taken a course taught by David Rogers here at Philadelphia University, you're seriously missing out. It should even be required for graduation! Whether you enjoy writing (or not) or looking for the opportunity to take a short course in Europe over the summer, David Rogers is your man. Luckily, this energetic, hardworking, lively man was able to take a little time out of his busy day to answer some questions from HC.

1. Name?

David Rogers

                             

2. Hometown?

Pensacola, Florida

 

3. Alma Mater?

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

 

4. Major?

English

 

5. Why did you choose this major?

I love reading and writing. And I love poetry. I actually have a love/hate relationship with writing. When it's going well, I love it and fell alive. I have to admit, though, that when it's not going well, it gives me a lot of anxiety and causes a lot of dread. But I think writing is one of the most important human acts. It shapes our reality. It's a tool for social justice. Honestly, it is an act of love.

 

6. First job you had after college?

Philadelphia University

 

7. What classes do you teach at Philadelphia University?

I teach a wide array of classes here: I have taught two Junior Seminars, Writing 101, Writing 201, American Diversity, Nexus Abroad, Serve Away and Reading the Visual.

 

 8. How long have you been teaching for?

 Almost four years.

 

9. How did you get into teaching a short course in Europe?

Phil Tiemeyer actually developed the idea. When I was interviewing for the job, he was telling me about the study abroad opportunities for students, and I got really excited because I really believe--when study abroad is done well—it is an incredibly valuable experience. I wish we could find a way to fund every student who is interested in studying abroad.

 

10. What is your favorite thing about teaching this short course?

The students and how they react to being in different places. I learn so much from my students. It's easy to forget that we don't define our experiences/our knowledge/our identities alone. We are co-defining those things with other people. I find that I am always a little changed from the study abroad experience because of the students I learn with.

 

11. Where is your favorite place to visit during this short course?

This is tricky. I love ALL the places. But since you are forcing me to answer with one place, I think my favorite place I've been on the study abroad short course is Sarajevo. It is one of the most interesting, dynamic places I've been in Europe. It's history is fascinating, and the people are absolutely lovely and welcoming.

 

12. If you could pick another destination to take the students for this short course, where would you take them?

Thailand.

 

13. What do you do with your free time?

Read, write, exercise, and travel.

 

14. PhilaU is all about Powered To Do and finding things either on or off campus that we could improve or make more sustainable. If you could pick something to change/improve here, what would it be?

I wish I could find a way to get students more politically active. PhilaU students are so creative and engaged, but many have expressed fears about expressing political opinions—and that has always bothered me.

 

15. On the other hand, what do you love most about PhilaU?

The students. Students who attend PhilaU aren't your typical students. They are designers, creators, innovators. They are inventors. They are kind and generous.

 

 16. Lastly, do you have a word of advice for college students?

  Write every day. Try something new often. Find an issue that interests you and become         an advocate.