As a first-year professor at Georgetown College, much of my first few months were spent getting into the groove of constant preparation for class and grading of class materials, but I was also working on finishing and editing my dissertation. Needless to say, the combination kept me sufficiently busy during the fall semester, but I greatly enjoyed teaching and appreciated the caliber of students that I was blessed to teach.
During the fall semester, I taught three sections of an Introduction to Ethics and one section of History of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, a generous schedule with only two preps so that I could complete my dissertation as well. Over Christmas break I successfully defended my dissertation, which explored and defended the thesis that virtue is necessary for happiness by looking in detail at the ethical works of Aristotle and Joseph Butler, a famous Anglican Bishop in the 18th century that is now little studied, as well as some contemporary moral philosophers, such as Bernard Williams and Alasdair MacIntyre. Having completed my graduate work, I took on the normal load of three preps during the spring semester, teaching two sections of Ethics, one of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, and one section of Basic Philosophy. I officially graduated on May 16th from Baylor University.
I also had the privilege to present a couple of papers at professional conferences this year, including one on the work of Alasdair MacIntyre at the International MacIntyre Conference at St. Meinrad’s in Indiana last August, and a paper on Nicholas Wolterstorff’s recent work on justice at the pacific division of the American Philosophical Association in April. Both were well received, and the conferences represented an enjoyable chance for fellowship and philosophical conversation. I hope to work up some more conference presentations this coming year, and am also working on several articles for publication.
The philosophy department at Georgetown has been extremely welcoming, and my wife and I are very happy to have landed in such a great Christian community with wonderful students and meaningful academic and personal support.