Professors hope to relay research in classroom, interact with students

Oct. 12, 2015

Rachel Librach
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Professors who are passionate about their subject and students can create an atmosphere of learning and close student-teacher interactions.

There are different categories of professors at UCCS such as full-time staff and instructors. Part-time faculty sometimes come into teaching straight from their careers.

“Everyone in my department is assisting students to succeed and that tells me something,” said Christy Lofton, a senior instructor in the department of sociology who also teaches a course at Pikes Peak Community College.

“Teachers aren’t paid the best salaries, so for professors to care for their students as much as they do here, means that they genuinely enjoy interacting with students and educating people about their subject,” she said.

Tenured or full-time professors have performed a great amount of research and scholarly work in their field of study to help prepare students on the more technical aspects of their major, according to Terry Schwartz, associate vice chancellor for Academic and Faculty Affairs.

“Faculty at UCCS is interested in having their students engage themselves in the course material because the networking skills and an appreciation for the subject really enriches the students’ experience,” she said.

The Faculty Resource Center is open to staff for when there is new technology in the classroom.

“This training helps keep the classroom teaching structure fresh and up to date,” said Schwartz.

Lofton was a student at UCCS before becoming a sociology professor.

“The vast wealth of knowledge and experience these professors have to offer students and the close knit faculty relationships is one of the main reasons why I teach.”

In interviews, faculty candidates are asked why they wish to be professors at UCCS. It’s often that they would like to continue with their research in a supportive environment, while educating students in the career they love, according to Schwartz.

“One of the things I do in this position is have a brief interview with faculty candidates. I always ask them, ‘why UCCS?’, and they tell me that they want to be somewhere where they can do research but where teaching is also important,” she said.