OBU Professor Completes Doctorate

Dr. Charles Swadley, Oklahoma Baptist University assistant professor of English and Spanish, recently completed his doctorate in Composition, Rhetoric and Literacy from the University of Oklahoma.

For his dissertation, "Remembering Memory: Reconfiguring the Fourth Canon of Classical Rhetoric," Swadley focused on Greek rhetoric because of his interest in communication and the ancient world.

"I chose to study rhetoric because of its rich history and interdisciplinary nature and because of my abiding interest in language," Swadley said. "I felt that a degree in Composition, Rhetoric and Literacy would round out my understanding of language and its use."

Only taking one course a semester, the process of completing his degree was slow. Swadley, however, applied the insights from his studies in his career.

"My studies have benefitted me by helping me to grow as a scholar," Swadley said. "I have also been able to bring my scholarship to bear in my teaching."

Throughout completing his degree, Swadley felt the support and encouragement from his family, colleagues and students, giving him a determination to finish.

"I'm very fortunate to be a part of the OBU academic community, where my peers set high standards for both scholarship and teaching, and where our students are eager to learn," Swadley said.

Swadley's father, a former professor, provided another form of encouragement and set an example by also pursuing his Ph.D. while active in his career.

"He showed me that it was possible to work, go to school, and raise a family," Swadley said. "Throughout the long process of getting my degree, I often thought about his example to me."

At OBU, Swadley teaches first- and second-year Spanish classes, Freshman English and Modern Grammar. In 2001, he received the Roy and Florena Hadsell Award for Research from the University of Oklahoma's English Department. He is also a member of the National Council of Teachers of English.