A University of Dallas English education brings to fruition the love of literature that isn’t commonly found in other universities, and it’s no secret that the president of Sigma Tau Delta, senior Theresa Guin, is one of the English Department’s biggest fans.
If the English Department were a football team, Guin would probably be in the audience decked out in a jersey and face paint, waving a foam finger.
“I always wanted to be like my older sister,” Guin said. “And when she went to UD and had such a wonderful experience, I wanted to do the same thing. However, as I got older and finally started applying for colleges, I decided that I wanted to ‘be my own person,’ or whatever, and I applied to twelve schools. And yet, I still ended up at UD. It was inevitable.”.
Her choice in major was inevitable as well, as her family was raised sans-tv, sans-video games, sans-media, and they found all of their entertainment within the pages of books.
“I read ‘Lord of the Rings’ at age seven and ‘Jane Eyre’ at age ten — so basic, I know — but I’ve read them both every year since.” Guin says.
Her love of literature started young, and it only strengthened after she came to UD.
“I had Dr. [Scott] Crider for Lit Trad I, and being in class with him was really wonderful,” Guin said. “He has a way of pushing you to be, well, more excellent. He taught me to see reading not as a pastime but as a discipline. It transformed something fun into something fascinating.”
According to Guin, what makes the English department so special is their genuine “love for their students.”
“They really care for us, and it makes a real difference when you’re writing a paper or considering skipping class,” Guin said.
“Between the professors and my UD friendships, all of my academic choices have been made for me. I remember registering for classes after Rome, and my older sister said that if I didn’t take [Dr. Gregory] Roper for Lit Trad IV, she’d ‘un-sister’ me.
“And then when picking my poet, I owe a lot to my friendship with Joe Flynn. When I got back from Rome, he was just finishing up his JPo semester, so he was constantly sharing poems with me. I was incredibly touched by Wilbur’s poetry, and I knew that I had to pick him for my own JPo project.”
Guin said that the English department “breathes life” into friendships, and it is these friendships that make it so “heartbreaking” to leave.
“I’m excited for what’s to come later in life, but it breaks my heart thinking of leaving UD,” Guin said.
But anyone who has been a UD student knows that you never truly leave. The friendships and lessons that are given stay with you for the long haul. Some students, like Guin, are so touched by the academia that they want to pursue it forever. Between her work as the Editor-in-Chief of the University Scholar and the president of English Honors Society, Sigma Tau Delta, Guin has shown her love of learning time and time again.
“The idea of leaving academia forever would be so sad for me,” Guin said. “I never want to stop talking about literature. I’m considering going to grad school, but if I did, I’d have to do the whole nine yards — Ph.D. and all. I think that being a professor would be so fulfilling for me — you can make a real difference.”