Teacher of the Month: May
Honors would like to introduce our teachers to you! Honors faculty are featured monthly so you can get to know your instructors.
Dr. Alexandra Fitts
I joined the faculty of UAF in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures in 1995 following several phone interviews- I had never even been to Alaska! It was my first job after graduate school and I thought that Fairbanks sounded like an interesting place to spend a couple of years. Obviously, those “couple of years” have stretched to many, as I have discovered my love for the people and places of Alaska.
My path to becoming a professor was not a clear one. I majored in Political Science as an undergraduate (Furman University- go Purple Palladins!), and decided to study in Spain during my senior year because I was done with my degree requirements and it sounded like fun. My fun “couple of months” in Spain ended up sort of like my adventure in Alaska, as I never really left. Living and studying in another culture and language opened my eyes to new worlds of possibility and I decided to pursue a Master’s degree that would allow me to study in Spain (Bowling Green State University). By then it was clear to me that I would continue focusing on Spanish and Latin American literature. I went on for my Ph.D at Duke University in a program that allowed me to mesh literature, culture, and gender theory. I also was able to study in Spain and do dissertation research in Argentina.
My field of research is women writers of Spain and Latin America, and I focus on the intersections of language, gender, and power. I teach everything from first semester Spanish language to the Senior capstone course. I have been Program Coordinator for the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, Chair of the Department of Foreign Languages, Interim Dean of General Studies, and as of a couple of days ago, Vice Provost. I have discovered that working in administration rewards me with new challenges and opportunities to impact students’ experiences. I look forward to continuing to work with the Honors Program in the years to come.