We all have that teacher we adore to pieces, the one we think of when a great professor is mentioned. The one we look for when it comes to class registration, because if we can take a class with them, of course we’re going to, regardless of if we need the class or not. Mine just happened to be Craig Titus.
I didn’t know Titus all that well. In fact, we didn’t meet until the beginning of this year. I had heard about him. People would excitedly tell stories about what went down in his ethic classes. My philosophy major friends would talk about how he keeps class interesting, and makes them think. So, registering for classes at the end of my sophomore year, I saw that he was teaching an English class. I needed an English course from before the 1800s, and I saw that Titus was teaching Ancient and Medieval Literature. Not going to lie, I didn’t want to take that course. I like Greek mythology, but that’s about the extent of my love for ancient texts. However, I registered for it anyway. I heard good things about Titus, so I figured I might give him a try. I never did regret it.
From day one, Titus kept things interesting. I remember the first day when we were all sitting at the tables in the bonfire room, he looked at me and said, “You’re sitting directly across from me. That’s usually the troublemaker’s seat. Are you a troublemaker?” Of course I wasn’t, I’m a goodie-two shoes for the most part. But he made me comfortable. Eventually we moved from the stuffy table with chairs, to the other side of the classroom where we could all sit in a circle and see one another better. That shift allowed me to show Titus how strange I was by only wanting to sit on the floor. I was literally the only person to like that, everyone else sat in chairs. (Dane seemed to love the one with the broken leg.) He took it in stride, and accepted it.
I loved going to his class (when I did show up), because the discussion was always interesting. Everyone had something to say. Everyone felt comfortable speaking up and sharing what they thought about the reading. Titus kept everyone interested in what was going on. When we found out that he was one of the teachers not getting their contracts renewed, the whole class was upset. I was devastated. A teacher like Titus doesn’t come around very often, and the fact that Drury was ready to let him go was heartbreaking. Not only does he teach his students well, and let’s face it, he does it so well, but he also goes above and beyond the call of a professor.
I remember going into Titus’s office to talk to him about my midterm. He’s the type of teacher who likes to talk you through his thought process when going over things like the midterm or final. He’s very interested in making sure you’ve got a grasp on what he’s teaching as well as why the grade you got was deserved. I remember talking to him for maybe twenty minutes about my midterm. But what really sticks out in my memory was the hour long talk afterwards about what was going on in my life. He listened to all the problems, the hopes, and the fears I had with open ears. For that, I am grateful.
Looking back on the time that I got to spend with Titus, I’m forever grateful. I feel so thankful for having the privilege of having him as a teacher, getting to know him, and learn from him. He definitely has impacted my life for the better. I wish him the best in Alaska. I’m going to miss him dearly. Drury is going to miss him dearly. I’ll never forget what he’s taught me academically and in life. He’s forever one of my favorite teachers. He’s one of the greats, and I’m so thankful for that.