FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 19, 2011
For more information:
Public Relations Department
Glenville State College
(304) 462-7361 ext. 6390
Glenville, WV—Long-time Professor of English Dr. Gayle Burkowski retired from Glenville State College in May of 2011 after twenty-two years of service to the institution and its students. For her distinguished career, the title of Professor Emerita was conferred upon Dr. Burkowski during the 137th Glenville State College Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 14, 2011.
“The things I will miss most are the contact with the students and the interaction and sharing of ideas with my colleagues on the faculty. I truly enjoyed watching students learn to improve their power to communicate in my classes,” said Burkowski.
Burkowski received a Bachelor of Arts in Education from Glassboro State College of New Jersey in 1970. She began her teaching career at Braxton County High School where she taught for eight years before coming to GSC. In 1985, Burkowski was awarded a Master’s of Education and Curriculum from West Virginia University. She received her Ph.D. in English from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 1995.
One of the GSC accomplishments that Dr. Burkowski is most proud of is her work with the English as a Second Language (ESL) program. She taught English to Japanese students in the International Program and organized the International Dinner for many years.
In addition to her English Composition classes, Burkowski was also a supervisor for GSC student teachers, something she says was very rewarding. “It was always very satisfying to sit in the back of a classroom and watch these young teachers-to-be pass along what they learned at GSC to their students.”
“Dr. Burkowski was an asset to the Department and to the College. Most important, her focus was always on her students and their academic success. Through her commendable work as supervisor for student teachers in English, she was an excellent representative for GSC and the Department in the West Virginia public schools. She will be missed by her colleagues and students,” said Wayne de Rosset GSC Associate Professor of English and Chair of the Language and Literature Department.
Gayle’s husband Robert (GSC ’90) was also a Professor at GSC. He retired from the Education Department in 2005. They live in Glenville and will be staying in Glenville because they love West Virginia. “I came here by choice and now it is home. We have deep roots here with all our children and their families,” said Burkowski. They have four children. Three are Glenville State College graduates. Richard earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Behavioral Science in 1997. After a stint with the U.S. Army, he returned to GSC and received his Bachelor of Arts in Education with a specialization in Social Studies in 2011. Daughter Robin graduated from GSC in 2000 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. Son Roger received a Bachelor of Arts in English from GSC in 2005. His wife Beth Ware Burkowski graduated from GSC in 2005. Daughter Ellen is currently attending the University of Oregon.
Dr. Burkowski will not be idle in retirement. She and Robert love canoeing and fishing and plan to have many adventures on our state’s beautiful waterways. They also enjoy bird watching, nature hiking, and are Geocaching enthusiasts. Gayle says she plans on getting involved with volunteer work having to do with nature and the environment. She also enjoys gardening and playing bridge.
Dr. Burkowski has been selected as the parade marshal for the 2011 GSC Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 15th. “What makes this a special honor for me is that I was chosen as the parade marshal by the students. It is always nice to be appreciated by your former students.”
“It was easy to stay at GSC as long as I did because it is such a wonderful school and friendly place to work,” said Burkowski.