This fall, ACU will once again offer a poetry workshop class open to all majors.
Al Haley, professor of English and writer in residence, will be the instructor for the course and looks forward to having students from all majors in his class.
“It is not just for English majors. I had some remarkable poets last year, including biochemistry and exercise science majors.” said Haley.
This class is also available for graduate credit.
Before professor Haley took over, this class was taught every two years. Since he took over, ENG 323 is now offered every fall. He has been advertising it to students via MyACU.
“I want people to realize that the best poetry is written by people from all walks of life,” Haley said. “I want students who are just looking for a fun elective to think about signing up.”
Though the idea may seem daunting, Haley insists his class is much more than reading from a book. He wants his students to learn to examine their lives more closely and discover key moments that happen in their everyday lives.
Zach Carstens, junior English and biblical text major from College Station, took the class last fall.
“When I heard there was a poetry workshop on campus taught by a published poet I signed up instantly,” Carstens said. “And it’s been one of my favorite classes I’ve taken at ACU so far.”
Haley is a prize-winning poet who teaches multiple classes for the Department of Language and Literature. He also is a published poet who has had work featured in several literary journals. Haley likes to think his class allows for thinking on a deeper level.
“I believe that experiencing life through poetry (both reading and writing it) can be part of living a God-centered life,” Said Haley “Think about it. Could this be why nearly a third of the Bible is written in poetry? Why Jesus often sounds like a poet?”
Poetry Workshop is not about beating classmates, but self-improvement. Carstens thought it was amazing to see himself and his peers improve in their writing throughout the semester.
“Dr. Haley taught the importance of developing a writing habit, rather than a writing hobby,” Carstens said. “Since taking the class, I’ve become a much more consistent writer, which has helped me to continue to learn and develop as a poet even after the class is over.”
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