Direction During the Pandemic Detour?

October 29th, 2020 § 0

A message from Professor Emeritus of English, Dr. Doug Thorpe:

For over forty years, I’ve worked to guide learners towards their own answers to these questions:

o What are your skills and talents?
o What do you love to do? What are you passionate about?
o How can you translate your skills and your passion into true
service out in the world?

As a mentor, spiritual director, and life coach, I’ve worked with college students as well as older adults in traditional academic settings and beyond. Having created a vocationally focused university course developed out of these years of work, and published the anthology Work & the Life of the Spirit, I’ve developed ways to explore the practical aspects of vocation while also allowing individuals to reflect more deeply on their own underlying talents and desires. The goal is to find work that feeds the body while also feeding the soul.

This is vocational work, but, more deeply, it is life work—meaning that I’m interested in getting as close to the truth of who you are as possible, and from that place helping you be that person: creative, imaginative, compassionate, joyful, relational.

I invite those with whom I work to explore these same questions—wherever that exploration takes us.

If this sounds at all interesting let me know and we can meet for an initial free session, no strings attached. We will talk, I will ask questions and get to know you, and then you can make up your own mind whether entering upon this journey together will be helpful. Pay what you can afford—we can discuss my sliding scale—and of course you can pause or stop at any time.

Also happy to provide references.

Doug Thorpe, Ph.D.

Veterans Appreciation Postcard Event

October 29th, 2020 § 0

Celebrate Veterans Day by writing postcards of thanks and appreciation to the three-hundred veterans at the Port Orchard Veterans Home and Transitional Housing Facility. Our goal is for each veteran to receive a hand-written note from an SPU student, faculty, or staff member thanking her/him for serving.

Cards will be available for delivery to campus offices starting on Tuesday, Oct. 27. Instructions will be included. Contact Ruth Adams at if you have questions. If you are working remotely and would like to participate, contact Ruth for options. Look for the Zoom Postcard Writing Event on Monday, Nov. 2.

Recent Grad Hannah Hinsch

October 15th, 2020 § 0

Hannah Hinsch recently got in touch with the department to report on what she’s been up to since graduating last June.

“Currently, I’m hard at work on my graduate school application for next fall, which (surprise) involves a lot of writing (and reading–so much reading),” Hannah said in an email. “For my writing sample, I’m adapting a paper I wrote for Dr. Maier’s seminar on Modernism last winter; the paper examines Katherine Anne Porter’s short story ‘Flowering Judas’ and how it deconstructs, in a way bordering on iconoclasm, the use of women’s bodies as religious icons.

“During grad school, I hope to really bolster my scholarship and cultivate my love of studying lit as a perpetual learner. I hope to meet more scholars in my field, both budding and seasoned, and build a network of people with which to share my passions (a network I have also found at SPU).”

As for her time as a student in the English and Cultural Studies Department, Hannah had this to say: “I loved being an English major[. . . .] [C]ritical inquiry and attentiveness to language required of anyone studying English are skills that I want to make my life mission to engage. Studying English doesn’t just mean you like reading; studying literature, asking questions of it, responding to it, provides you with a way of being in the world and encountering discourses. It’s amazing what a love of reading and writing can become, and the broader conversations that you can join from the hundreds of years of scholarly thinking on writers that continue to move us.”

Thanks for the insights, Hannah, and best wishes on the grad-school applications!

English Professor Emeritus Publishes Collection of New Poems

October 12th, 2020 § 0

Professor Emeritus Tom Trzyna’s New Poems has been released by Wipf and Stock Resources Publications, in Eugene, Oregon. Poet Ralph Skip Stevens, author of At Bunker Cove and Things Haven’t Been the Same, calls it “A delight to read.” Trzyna says, “I wanted to be a poet from seventh grade. Now that I have finished some books on pressing issues, I made time for verse.”

Students may also find nourishment in his Karl Popper and Literary Theory: Critical Rationalism as a Philosophy of Literature. Leiden: Brill, 2017.

Here’s a sample from New Poems:

Poetry Time

Our time expands or shrinks as we create
Or waste our hours in passive idleness.
To pause and wait is not to hesitate:
How fruitful a day of disciplined emptiness.
The sun rises and sets, the lavender blooms,
Bees scour the petals of open flowers
Sampling pollen for their honeycombs.
The breeze brings clouds and welcome showers.
Digressions and guesses play out their games of chess,
Ideas and calculations surge and ebb,
Ineffable mix of blanks and consciousness.
Thoughts and sounds and colors spin a web.
A poem assembles, cinema crystalized
That screens in myriad ways behind our eyes.

All Majors Career Fair

October 5th, 2020 § 0

Wednesday, October 7th
Noon-4 p.m. (open)
Via Handshake

Why Attend?
Jobs, internships, and more
One-on-one sessions with recruiters
Small-group sessions
Professional networking

Who’s Coming?
City Year
Peace Corps
Sixty more employers

Registration on Handshake

Sponsored by SPU’s Center for Career and Calling

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