Connecticut College Magazine · Winter 2004

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Why I teach
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Donald M. Peppard

Donald M. Peppard
Donald M. Peppard

Professor of Economics
Joined CC faculty: 1975


In my 28 years of teaching, I’ve hoped that I would affect some students the way a few of my professors influenced me many years ago. I treasured those teachers when I was an undergraduate, and I still remember them fondly. They were not people with whom I had personal relationships, but rather they were teachers who were able to make large classes seem small or who were able to overcome impersonal settings through the strength of their personalities and pedagogy. In the process, they made an impersonal place like Michigan State seem much less so. In retrospect, they were the teachers who inspired me to teach.
While I’ve enjoyed new research projects and new courses, year-in and year-out it’s students who keep me engaged and energized. The connections that I’ve made with students are the most rewarding part of this job. For example, I am fortunate to still have two friends from the first class I taught in 1975, and recently the chance to work closely with small groups of CC students in Vietnam has been the opportunity of a lifetime. Even when we haven’t stayed in touch, there are dozens of others whom I remember fondly. Teaching here has shown me repeatedly that while I loved being a student in a large university, I could never happily teach in one.


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