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UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE
50 YEARS, 50 VOICES
DR. CHERYL MISAK
50 YEARS, 50 VOICES
Dr. Cheryl Misak
Cheryl Misak graduated from the University with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy in 1983, and an Master of Arts from Columbia University. She is the first U of L graduate to become a Rhodes Scholar, graduating with her Doctor of Philosophy in 1988. Currently she teaches philosophy at the University of Toronto.
Cheryl reminisces about her undergraduate experience as a philosophy student at the University.
The full audio interview will be made available online in late 2017. For more information please contact the University of Lethbridge Archives. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Well, it was a pretty small department at the time and I think it probably still is. I took a huge number of courses from Mike Kubara who is not the easiest guy in the world. And also I took a massive, massive number of independent study courses. And I think I actually, I was responsible for the change in the policies and rules at the University of Lethbridge bcause I took 12 independent studies and when someone saw that I think they said, ‘That’s too many,’ and then they put a limit on it. So, I took independent studies from ... many from Mike and for a long time I held a record: I was the only student who ever completed an independent study from him because he was really difficult. And I did, I don’t know about seven, or eight, or nine. And then you know, 15 years later or something, someone else completed one independent study with him and my ... the record had to be shifted a little bit. But I also took independent studies from actually ... John Woods who was president of the University at the time but also a philosopher. There was Professor Steve Patten, I took courses from him. I took independent studies with someone in the ... maybe two in the Sociology Department because I was interested in Pragmatism. And there was a fellow who was a George Mead scholar and Mead was part of the Pragmatist Movement, so I, you know, I took one or two independent studies with him. And some of my classes had two people…you know, so even the classes in upper-year philosophy were tiny.
As you put it, it was a very personalized education. And, you know I was literally, you know, literally Mike Kubara taught me how to write by ripping my sentences apart one by one by one and showing me why they were no good at all, and rewriting them and you know you just ... that’s, that’s really special.
(Interviewed by Lisa Pasolli)