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The English Department's Dr. Robert Craven- Once a Titan Always a Titan

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Robert Craven

NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. – Please welcome Robert Craven, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of English, back to Westminster College.

Originally from Ellwood City, Pa, Craven completed his undergraduate studies at Westminster College in 2013. He majored in English and minored in Writing. Craven furthered his education at Duquesne University in 2015 where he received his M.A. in English and finishing up at the University of Oregon where he received his Ph.D. in English this past year (2022).

Now taking a few steps back to Craven’s roots here at Westminster. One of his favorite courses during his undergraduate was Dr. Swerdlow’s poetry workshops where he was lucky enough to take two of them. Some of his favorite spots around campus include:

“Sandy’s Labyrinth is a special place. Second, the old ‘frisbee field’ brings back happy memories. Third, I like to fish at Brittan Lake.”

Sandy’s Labyrinth is a circular path just west of the nature center, just beyond the break of the small hill on Fayette-New Wilmington Road. This special path is lined with rocks that were contributed or collected by locals. This path is meant to be a retreat for those who are looking for a place of silence or talk with friends. There is a deeper history beyond this beautiful place that I encourage you to investigate.

Look out for Dr. Craven in those various spots on and off campus. But many of you may be wondering what caught Dr. Craven’s attention to join the faculty at Westminster. “Several things. I love the high-quality instruction and personal care that faculty bring to their work here.  I agree with the liberal arts mission of the College.” Concluding with, “I love a rural campus.” After experiencing both the rural and suburb campuses and way of living.

Craven hopes to contribute to the liberal arts education that he so appreciates by meeting some personal goals…

“My teachers have been mighty influences in my life. Paying that forward, I hope to become a good advisor, a fun instructor, and my students’ favorite teacher. I’m here to get to know them, challenge them, make a lasting impression, and share a love of learning with them.”

It sounds like Dr. Craven wants nothing but the best for his future students and fellow colleagues. But the greatness that resides within our new professor does not stop with his astonishing education in English, he also has many other special talents.

“I am a music hobbyist. I love to compose and perform music on string instruments in a variety of genres.” And Craven is also hosting a music related event this fall/ winter, “Come to my Bleasby Colloquium this November if you’d like to learn about historical banjo performance traditions that are not widely known!”

A Bleasby, colloquia series, is a great opportunity to build “a sense of community” through bringing any aspiring scholars and faculty together to share what they are learning and spread their knowledge. In past years English professor Dr. David Swerdlow has read from his debut novel Television Man, and it was followed by a book signing. Fiction writer, Sherrie Flick, was also a part of this series where she read pieces from her collection Whiskey.

In the end, both faculty and students are blessed to have Craven back at Westminster. There is no doubt he will impact this campus in a positive way while advising his students to become exceptional. Be sure to look out for Dr. Craven while walking around campus and welcome him back to the Titan community.

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