Meet the Faculty: Donald Samson

Professor of English Donald Samson uses his love of Shakespeare to inspire students and spark their curiosity.

"I think teaching is one of the most important things anyone can do and I think it's very important that teachers at all levels prepare students for their lives, as well as their careers," Samson said. "As far as teaching Shakespeare goes, I think Shakespeare is the greatest writer who ever wrote. He had the ability to entertain people but at the same time give them some things to think about."

Samson believes that a well-rounded education is key in shaping the lives of students. He encourages students to seek out opportunities, like those available through international study.

"If we can see the plays on stage, all the better. And we do that in my study abroad program in London in the summer," Samson said. "We spend three weeks in London and outside London, in Salisbury, at Stonehenge, Canterbury, Windsor and so on. We see plays at the national theater and at Shakespeare's Globe. I think it's a wonderful opportunity for students, especially those who don't have much travel experience."

Samson earned his Ph.D. and M.A. in Shakespeare at the University of North Carolina and his B.A. at Cornell University. In addition to advocating for Shakespeare, he also teaches surveys of British and American Literature and technical writing.

"I think that it's very important to study works by those writers, to study the paintings, study the artwork and so on," he said. "It expands understanding of life and people to prepare themselves for the rest of their lives."

Feb 7, 2014