Instructor in English Charles Frankenbach was honored with the Phebe and Zephaniah Swift Moore Teaching Award during Amherst College's commencement on May 20.
Frankenbach was nominated for the award by a former student, Irisdelia (Iris) Garcia '14, who graduated from Amherst with a B.A. in English. In a news post on the college website, Garcia said that when she first learned she had Frankenbach as an English instructor for her senior year at Hotchkiss, she was terrified. She knew he had a reputation for "tough love," and English was the subject in which she had the least confidence
Yet, Garcia said, he made her feel recognized for who she was for the first time at Hotchkiss. "He was the first person to tell me I was a good writer. He was the first person to tell me my story was important on the page. And, most of all, he was the first person to tell me my remixed, multilingual self was just as worthy."
Frankenbach empowered Garcia to trust herself and to value her unique voice. He eventually inspired her to submit some particularly personal writing for consideration for a prestigious Teagle Prize, which she won.
Gracia cited Frankenbach's "compassion, radical tenderness, and diligent dedication to the success of his students."
"Without him," she said, "I would not be graduating with a degree in English today. Without him, I would not have the confidence that I have today." Read the full story on the Amherst College website. Photo courtesy of Amherst College.