Professor juggles class, duties to honors college

Ted Hamilton

ELIZABETH MYERS | DAILY KENT STATER Dean of the Honors College, Larry Andrews, teaches his last class in room 62 in Johnson Hall, the new honors dorm.

Credit: Adam Griffiths

Students in the classroom sit and listen intently to the professor. No one goofs off, and no question goes unanswered. Not just because the professor is also many of the students’ dean, but because most are interested in what the professor has to say.

Larry Andrews has been busy this semester teaching the English course Great Books II, as well as dealing with his everyday administrative responsibilities as the dean of the Honors College.

Having the responsibilities of both is a challenge, he said. It can tie him down and interfere with plans such as fund raising.

“I made (teaching) a priority this semester since it’s my last semester as a full-time dean,” he said.

Andrews tries to allow flexibility and variety on writing assignments in his class because he needs flexibility playing the roles of both dean and professor.

Many deans cannot teach because of their administrative responsibilities, but Andrews said his position is different from others. It is easier for him to find the time to teach because he does not have as many administrative responsibilities as the deans of other colleges.

“It is very important for me to maintain direct contact with students and honors students,” he said.

Students seem to understand he is not just an ordinary professor because he has a lot more responsibilities, freshman exploratory major Maeve Manion-Fischer said.

“He understands that it’s not the only class we’re taking,” she said.

Manion-Fischer said she took the class for a couple of different reasons.

“I decided to take Great Books when I found out Larry Andrews was retiring and wouldn’t be here next year,” she said. “It was my last chance to take a class with him.”

Andrews also said he thinks students should do something with what they learn.

Part of the curriculum involves coming up with a civic project to be completed as a class or in groups, Crotty said. Andrews suggested writing letters to the state legislature about creating a fund for impoverished women that would go toward supplying a vaccine that treats cervical cancer caused by the human papilloma virus.

“The idea is to raise awareness about assisting people who can’t afford it,” he said. “The vaccine costs between $500 and $900. I made the suggestion because the college has a large population of young women.”

Andrews will retire this semester after teaching for 38 years at Kent State. He has been a dean for the past 14. He said he will miss a lot of things about being a dean and being a professor such as teaching, faculty and the students themselves.

“I probably won’t teach the first year (after retirement), but I’m interested in a course maybe later on,” he said. “I’m open to it if it’s something that appeals to me.”

Contact honors and international affairs reporter Ted Hamilton at [email protected].