My academic college career began at Oakland Community College (OCC) in Royal Oak, MI where I earned an Associate’s Degree in Liberal Arts-Education graduating Magna Cum Laude and earning a Presidential Scholarship to Wayne State University in the process. My undergraduate work was done through both the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences where I earned my Bachelor’s Degree in History Honors, and jointly, completed my minor in Political Science and teaching certification through the College of Education. After taking a short amount of time off, I returned to earn a Master’s Degree in History from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. My decision to continue with Wayne State in this fashion was due to the strength of the Department of History at Wayne, as well as the needs of my family.
While I have spent a good deal of time teaching at the college level—I returned to OCC to teach history in 2008—I have spent time teaching as a substitute in a number of schools and as a tutor. My first student was a young teen who preferred to be home schooled. The tutoring eventually extended to his brother. Later, I was employed to assist another teen, a young lady whose mother believed needed my assistance.
As an instructor, my approach to the classroom involves lectures and discussion. I enjoy a good debate, which requires that students are prepared through readings and research, as well as their own opinion. This will take place with a tutored student as well, all be it as a discussion. That said, students must read. They should feel comfortable critiquing an author. I have met a good number of authors and most appreciate the ideas of their readers. Students should feel at ease asking questions. It is an important part of how we learn. My best teachers and professors expected many questions, and they felt quite comfortable putting their students on the spot. Some of the best questions came from those who did the reading but did not understand it. This also helped instructors to know who was doing well, and who needed help.
As my professional field is in history and political science, both are my favorite and strongest areas. And as both cover a variety of other subjects, including religion and philosophy; both are also among my interests, if on a more casual approach. Over my years of teaching, I have also noticed a need for assistance in writing. Far too many of my students have struggled with essays and term papers. I am not a grammarian, but through reviewing countless submissions by students, I have come to appreciate a variety of styles as well as citation requirements, including but not limited to Chicago or Turabian, APA, Harvard, and of course the ubiquitous MLA.
As a professor, I am often asked what I enjoy outside the classroom. My interests are rather eclectic. I really do enjoy reading. I also like a good movie or play. But I also am into sports. Full disclosure, I am originally from Boston, so the Red Sox, Patriots, Bruins and Celtics are my teams. I also cycle and meditate. When I can, I love to golf. Oh, I also mow the lawn and perform other chores at home.
You may want to know this: I am excited by what I teach, and students have told me it shows. I want students to share the feeling. I have and share opinion. I often take students on in debate. It’s a great way to learn, and learning is what I love to do.
Wayne State University - BA, History Honors
Wayne State University - MA, History
AP US History
College Level American History
High School English
High School Geography
High School Level American History