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Dr. Wayne Glowka featured as #RUFacultyFriday

Dr. Wayne Glowka is celebrating 10 years at Reinhardt University where he serves as the Dean of the School of Arts and Humanities and a professor of English.

His two roles bring out different traits: one of mediator and one to instill life-long learning.

“(As Dean), I mediate between the wishes of higher administration and the faculty. I also mediate between the wishes of faculty and students. I believe that my main role as a professor is to be a life-long learner,” Glowka said.

His career has led him through different courses of study, but his No. 1 love, English, is a staple in his life, and he never stops learning about it.

“In the course of my career, I have moved from medieval studies and linguistics to editing, methods of research, and creative writing. I majored in English to learn more about writing, and I have never stopped learning about it,” Glowka said. “Nor have I ever stopped writing. I wrote scholars works. I wrote an epic. I wrote romances. I have been writing plays. I still have more to learn. As Geoffrey Chaucer said, ‘The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne.’ (‘Life is so short; it takes a long time to learn an art.’)"

As a student, Glowka had many professors who impacted his career but none as much as a man from Atlanta who taught with a hard hand and humorous soul.

“Dr. James H. Sledd was a scary one-eyed man from Atlanta with a heavy Southern accent. He taught with intimidation and fear--and a good measure of joking and foolishness. He loved to put students on the spot, and he was as hard on us as he was on his colleagues, whom he skewered in merciless book reviews, dismissive articles, and face-to-face confrontations. He believed that ideas were important and that scholars in the humanities should avoid academic fads,” he said. “As the study of literature became political indoctrination in the late 20th century, I tried to maintain his sane dictum: literature is supposed to be fun.”

As a professor himself, Glowka’s current favorite class to teach is ENG 383 Literary Editing and Publishing. He gets to see a student take a piece from brainstorming to having a full published work.

“I get a great deal of satisfaction from watching the students struggle with some rather complicated directions and a maddening set of templates and then succeed one by one in getting their books published,” he said.” They are very proud when they finally bring paper copies of their books to class and show them off. My students have published literary works likes poetry and fiction, but some have published cookbooks of family recipes. One of the cookbooks was in Portuguese. Last time, students published the best of the diaries and journals they had been keeping since they learned to read and write.”

At the end of the course, the students have a published book of their own on Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats.

As a professor and dean, Glowka gets to watch students mature into well-rounded adults and says he tells parents that Reinhardt is the perfect place for students to find themselves.

“I think that the biggest problem of young students is their lack of maturity. Out on their own for the first time in their lives, they often lack self-discipline and focus,” Glowka said. “I tell parents these days that Reinhardt is a perfect place for growing up. It is safe. There is personal contact with professors, administrators, and staff.  Someone is always around to help students when they have their inevitable setbacks.”

Glowka earned his Bachelor of Arts and his Master of Arts (both in English) from the University of Texas at Austin. He continued his studies, earning his Ph.D. in English from the University of Delaware. He served at Georgia College & State University from 1980-2007 in different professorial ranks and coordinator of graduate studies in English. He joined Reinhardt in 2007 as a professor of English, coordinator of the English program and dean of the School of Arts and Humanities.

Thank you, Dr. Glowka, for your leadership and dedication to student learning at Reinhardt.

Dr. Wayne Glowka

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