GC's Faculty Shines
Submitted on April 17, 2020
The transformational education provided by Georgetown College stands out in large part due to the exceptional faculty members who dedicate their lives to enriching the minds of students and guiding them into the next phase of their lives. The personal attention faculty give students helps them grow and = further prepares them for that first job or graduate school.
Due to the outbreak of Covid-19, Georgetown College moved to online instruction on March 11, 2020. This move brought out the absolute best in GC’s faculty, with professors working together to quickly establish virtual courses that would provide students with an exceptional education, even while social distancing at home. President Jones described the work best, when he said, “Imagine your favorite movie. Think about the work that went into taking the original written script and transforming that written content into an Oscar-winning visual and audio experience. That’s almost what our faculty have had to do in the blink of an eye.”
Of course, like so many others during this time, the way faculty members at the college work has changed significantly, but they have stepped up in a big way. Professors have worked diligently in order to continue to provide students a bit of what makes GC special. Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities, Christopher Powell, had this to say about trying to achieve that unique, personal educational model that Georgetown College is known for. “While I'm not in the more constant contact with students that we have on campus, students are submitting assignments and sharing emails on an individual basis and I'm able to give them honest relevant feedback without having to share that in a full classroom. Knowing that the personal relationships are such an important, unique part of the GC atmosphere, this will always be a priority for me.”
Meanwhile, faculty members have been incredibly encouraged by how their students have adjusted to online courses. Professor of Spanish, Dr. Laura Hunt, said, “Our students have been incredible. They have demonstrated unbelievable flexibility and patience as they adapt to new teaching styles, technological difficulties, and uncertain new expectations from their professors. They are doing high quality work and showing incredible grace to their professors and classmates! I am always amazed by Georgetown students, but even more so now.”
While professors and students miss that in-person classroom experience, everyone is making the best of the situation. “I think the key is to keep it interesting and create as many opportunities for student interaction as possible,” said Dr. Hunt. “I try to mix up the kinds of assignments I create—we’ve had fun with reading poetry on Zoom, sharing research on discussion boards, playing with Google tools like My Maps and Flipgrid, and doing online games.”
No matter what, though, everyone at GC will continue to tackle this challenge the way other challenges have been met in the course of the college’s 190 year history. Powell sums up tackling the challenge best. “The biggest thing I keep reminding myself is that we're all in this together.”