For the past 20 years, longtime lecturer Sandra Carrettin has been enriching the lives of many students—some of whom have been with her for more than 10 years—teaching Italian in our Foreign Language Program. Over the years Carrettin has received pages and pages of travel diaries, postcards and emails recollecting specials moments of their trips to Italy—all proudly written in Italian. Carrettin was gracious enough to share some of her memories below.
When did you start teaching here and was your class very different then?
I started teaching here over twenty years ago and have been here ever since. I love my classes because the program attracts such interesting people. I remember everyone from my first class, and I am often surprised and delighted when I encounter a former student.
Are you excited about the new D. Kent and Linda C. Anderson and Robert L. and Jean T. Clarke Center?
I was fortunate to be able to visit the new Anderson-Clarke Center, so I am excitedly looking forward to being a part of this brand new ambiance.
Have you seen many changes during your tenure here at the Glasscock School?
Oh, yes. When I began, the main office was in the basement of the library, and my first classes were on the fourth floor of the math building! Now there is more contact with other personnel and other teachers. In addition, students are not isolated from each other.
What do you enjoy about teaching courses at the Glasscock School?
It’s always a joy to arrive there on an evening and feel the support of the administration, the excitement of the language teachers together before class, and the determination of students rushing in, perhaps after a day’s work, ready to meet the challenges of learning something new.
Can you recall any proud moments with your students over the years?
There are proud moments in EVERY class. I love to watch even the most reticent student suddenly blossom and feel successful. For example, once there was a delightful seventy-something lady studying a language for the first time in her life. She loved the experience, and for two terms her classmates enjoyed her humor and her homemade cookies. Some other examples include: students traveling to Italy and continuing to study the language upon their return, students celebrating receiving their certificate at the end of the course and students becoming like family and taking mores classes together to share in learning about Italian culture.
Interested in learning a new language like Italian this spring? Visit languages.rice.edu for more information and to register today!