Best Undergraduate Teaching
I have just finished reading the “In Brief” section of the fall/winter issue and was very pleased to learn that U.S. News & World Report ranked Beloit in the top 10 on its list of colleges with the best undergraduate teaching.
During my four years at Beloit, I remember fondly the many talented teachers I had as an undergraduate. They included Professors Adams, Hodge, Irrmann, and Osen in the history department, and Professors McAllister, Crom, and Ray in other departments.
Perhaps they served unknowingly as role models since I became a school teacher the year after I left Beloit, and taught for the next 36 years in Milwaukee and Brookline (Mass.).
Now I am retired from teaching school but teach tennis at the Boston Sports Club and supervise student teachers from Emmanuel College in Boston.
I never realized how much these men influenced me in choosing a career. I am convinced that many of the Ivy League schools with their fancy reputations could not match the outstanding teaching that goes on at Beloit College.
Thanks for showing me how it is done.
Remembering Scott Crom
I was sorry to read about the death of Scott Crom. I showed up at Beloit in the fall of 1975 loving science fiction and wanting to find faculty members who were as enthusiastic about it as I was. I found two: librarian Clyde Peterman and Scott Crom, who at the time kept 20 years’ worth of Fantasy & Science Fiction magazine in his office. F&SF was (and is) my favorite science fiction magazine, so I took all the courses he offered, which led to my adding a philosophy major to the history major I was already planning to obtain.
As a teacher, Crom was both very kind and very demanding. He made you study the great philosophers very closely, but repaid the effort by closely analyzing your arguments and poking holes in them. In his advanced seminars, he’d typically give you back a 10-page paper with five single-spaced pages of notes. As a nonfiction writer who often has to explain complicated subjects, I had no better training at Beloit than Scott Crom’s philosophy courses.
Martin Morse Wooster’80
Silver Spring, Md.
Life and Financial Planning
I was so excited to see the article about Warren Palmer and his life and financial planning workshop in Beloit’s magazine this quarter. I smirked and remembered that he told me to show up to the dealership to haggle for my first car (loan) with a calculator! It totally worked; for intimidation, too.
I want to comment on how happy I was to see the life and financial planning course offering at Beloit. I was not financially savvy coming out of Beloit back in 1986 but was lucky enough to meet my future wife whose father was in the investment business. I learned about investing; the power of time in the market and the magic of compounding interest from him years later. I am grateful every day that he not only taught me well but also modeled most of the behaviors that Warren Palmer laid out in his 10 tips. I have cut them out and put them on my refrigerator so that it will be a reminder to my kids as they get jobs and begin their adult lives. Keep up the great work.