We begin this year’s notes from the faculty with Troy Byler. If you’ve read the preceding Letter from the Chair, you’ll know that Troy is moving on to an exciting new position as the new director of the Advance College Project. And if you know Troy, you won’t be surprised that he makes no mention of this in his report and instead singles out the accomplishments of another educator.
“Many of our department’s talented undergraduate students come from German high school programs taught by pedagogically sound and dedicated teachers. For my newsletter submission this year, I would like to highlight one of these great teachers. Fritz Krahl, German and History teacher at Pike Central High School in Petersburg, Indiana, came to the teaching profession later in life than most. He gave up a long, successful career working for General Electric to pursue a passion and give back in the form of education. Six years ago, he applied and was accepted to IU’s Advance College Project. Since his orientation into the teaching philosophy and materials used here in our department, he has been offering his students the chance to take his German courses for IU G150 credits in the second year and G200/250 credits in the third and final year. All the while, he has been strongly upholding the rigor and quality of those courses, giving his students the opportunity to begin their college careers already in the intermediate and advanced levels of German. He has recently pioneered a true example of language teaching across the curriculum by offering his German students a yearlong course taught in German, where they will receive high school credit for both American and World History. Because of Fritz’s initiative and the willingness of the administration at Pike Central High School to support him, his students will be able to gain a unique learning experience offered nowhere else in the state.
Every chance we get to encourage our primary and secondary educators, we need to make sure that we voice and publicize our appreciation. It is because of the hard work and effort from teachers like Fritz that we are able to welcome so many gifted and enthusiastic undergraduates wanting to learn more from us.”