Macon State College MVPs is a web feature that profiles notable students, alumni, faculty and staff.
Full Name: Thomas Carlton Harrison.
Originally From: Born in Orlando, Fla.; grew up in Wildwood, Fla., son of a railway conductor in a railroad town.
Family: Wife, JoAnn; stepchildren, Freddie, Lynn and Rabun; grandchildren, Josh, Destin and Blake; great-grandchildren, Abby and Jay.
Job Title: Professor of English.
Degrees: Bachelor of arts and master of arts in English and doctor of philosophy in linguistics, University of Florida.
Year he joined the Macon State faculty: 1987.
Some of his teaching career highlights are … "Having articles accepted in back-to-back issues of The Explicator in 2000 and 2001 was certainly a surprise and a high point, but surely getting the Macon State College award for outstanding teaching in 2009 was even better."
He enjoys teaching at Macon State College because … "The students at Macon State have a real-world grit that might be missing in schools that recruit and serve only the upper few percent."
His favorite course to teach is … "I am now, in 2009, teaching courses in the subjects I was trained in, 'Advanced Grammar' and 'History of the English Language,' for the first time in 25 years, and those courses are very rewarding. But I think the courses that have engaged me the most are 'Chaucer' because of the joy of discovery I can impart to students who may have thought that Middle English was inaccessible, and 'Advanced Composition' because I can communicate with students who may have fallen into a major or minor in English, as I did, because of an interest in writing."
One thing people don’t know about Macon State is ... "The campus lake used to be surrounded by trees, that there was once no curb around it - and people were once permitted to fish there."
One thing people don’t know about him is … "Whatever it is, they need only ask me if they want to know."
In his spare time he likes to ... "Sing with the Macon State College Chamber Singers and in my church choir, participate in reader’s theater at church, walk in the woods, watch birds and other critters and talk with my friends in the Natural Sciences department. I have had lots of questions for them."
The one person he'd most like to meet is … "Henry David Thoreau, to whom I am grateful for his life, his energy, his humor, his determination and his courage."
If he wasn’t a college professor he would be a ... "Biologist or chemist because science was my first love. Those careers might or might not have entailed professing."