Story by Kirsten Fedorowicz, Staff Writer
Photo courtesy of Aquinas.edu
When I went to my STAR day the summer before my freshman year, my adviser was patient with me, encouraged me to take English classes despite my undeclared major, and didn’t mind that we were the last people in the room by a good ten minutes because of my indecisiveness. Since that time, Pamela Dail Whiting has become a wonderful mentor to me. She has improved my writing and Aquinas experience exponentially.
Many students share my sentiment, including Senior Mary Campell who said “Pamela is a mentor and mother figure to me, who has shaped not only myself, but Aquinas College as a place of learning and growth. Though I cannot fathom what life at Aquinas will be like without her, I wish her nothing but joy and happiness in her retirement.”
Dail Whiting says that her impact can’t always be felt until years later. “My goal as a teacher has been to give students ‘their’ voices. To have them discover what they have to say and to say it as clearly and beautifully as they can.”
Pamela Dail Whiting will be retiring from the English department at the end of this semester. She says the feeling of retirement is bittersweet, as she will miss the Aquinas community and the students she has taught here.
Dail Whiting said that she looks forward to using her skills in another way, and hopes to volunteer at Women’s Shelters to help victims of trafficking and abuse. When she’s not working as a social activist, she would like to spend more time with her grandchildren.
While reflecting on about thirty years teaching at Aquinas, Dail Whiting had a hard time picking a “biggest accomplishment.” Instead, she said, “I hope I’ve touched others’ lives for the better during the time I have been at Aquinas. I’ve always believed that it is through literature and writing that we find our best selves, our common humanity, our compassion, and I hope that has been true for students in my literature, humanities, and writing courses.”
Dail Whiting has affected the lives of students across disciplines, and will be missed by the Aquinas students and faculty.
There will be a retirement celebration for Pamela Dail Whiting from 4-6 p.m. on Dec. 2 in Donnelly Center.
About the Writer…
Kirsten Fedorowicz is a sophomore English major and women’s studies minor. She is involved in the SAC, Enactus, and Interfaith clubs on campus. Kirsten is a runner, an avid seamstress, and a spoken word poet. She really loves trees.