About the Instructor
Phil Fitzpatrick is a writing and literature instructor at Mesabi Range Community & Technical College in Virginia, Minnesota. A native Minnesotan, Phil was educated at Harvard College and Middlebury's Bread Loaf School of English; he spent 25 years teaching English at schools in Delaware and North Carolina before returning to Minnesota in 1988. He currently lives in Duluth where he has a cat, a black lab named Leo, a garden, and an abiding love for the Shores of Gitchi Gumi (Lake Superior).
Phil enjoys writing and has done a wide variety of work for local community newspapers. He has written film criticism, feature stories, poetry, and some fiction. When his desk and office finally get cleaned up, and/or when the Dodgers return to Brooklyn, he will commence writing the Great American Novel.
Letter To Students
Greetings, and welcome to English 50! It is indeed a pleasure to be a member of the Barstow Community College faculty and community. I look forward to working closely with you on your writing. I will do my very best to give you prompt, supportive, honest, and useful feedback on your work. I will expect you to try your best to submit your work on time, and to try to avoid dashing it off at the last minute.
Since I will take great pains to help youon your path toward becoming a better writer, it stands to reason that the best ways to help me do that are:
1) take each assignment seriously,
2) start on it early enough to do a reasonably good job at least,
3) work hard to incorporate my comments and suggestions into each successive piece of writing especially the grammar tips,
4) let me know when you are confused, want more feedback or information, or feel that I am not giving you what you need
This kind of education requires dutiful attention to the schedule. I expect you to be prompt in submitting your work to me, and I will do my very best to return the courtesy. If you feel yourself getting behind, please keep me informed. It will only compound the problem if you wait to get in touch with me. I do not have time to send you reminders or to check up on you, since all of my efforts will be geared toward working with students whose work is done on time. Use my email as often as you wish, or call me if there is an emergency. My addresses and numbers are on the syllabus.
Thank you for enrolling in English 50. I wish you the very best of luck, and I compliment you ahead of time on the work you will be doing, the decision to further your education, and on communicating regularly with me and with your classmates.