It was great to bounce back this week after spending all of last week sick. I was really grateful to be able to attend all of my classes, not to mention to be able to breathe through my nose and stay awake for longer than three hours at a time! Thus, my highlight this week is related to one of my favorite classes (which I have written about before), English 407: Advanced Poetry Workshop.
HOMW 5: CAN I GET YOUR AUTOGRAPH?
As I have previously mentioned, my Monday/Friday poetry workshop is a favorite of mine because of the small class size and our hilarious professor, Dr. Leising. A typical day in our class involves reviewing one another’s work, discussing a reading from the week, and brainstorming as a group for a future assignment. We often use a book titled The Poetry Gymnasium to help us find new ways to develop our writing skills and stretch our comfort zones as poets. The class is always a comfortable, welcoming environment, which is especially valuable when we spend so much time having our writing critiqued. Dr. Leising is great at keeping things productive and helping us improve as writers while still making sure we feel like we can have fun and express ourselves fully.
Anyway, this past week, we were reading through The Poetry Gymnasium when we saw a familiar name referenced in the text: Gary Leising! The author mentioned reading one of Dr. Leising’s poems and how it could be interpreted many ways. I knew that our professor had written loads of poetry and had won awards for his work in the past (including Utica College’s Clark Award he was presented with at convocation this fall), but it was really cool to see him referenced in our book. Dr. Leising was very humble about the whole thing, but of course I had him autograph my book right below where his name was printed.
I never imagined when I began attending Utica College that such a small college would offer classes taught by individuals that are so well-known and respected in their field. Four years later, I can say that I have learned from some truly special people who have shared their experiences and wisdom with me and really have helped me grow as a student and an individual. Dr. Leising’s shout out in our textbook is a more obvious example of just how awesome the UC faculty are, and it was definitely a memorable moment from my week!