The Student Activities Board will host WVU Tech history professor, Dr. Paul Rakes, for his lecture, “Life’s a Comedy, Not a Tragedy: The Rakes Methodology” on Wednesday, October 29 at 7 p.m. in the Tech Center Ballroom.
Dr. Rakes’ lecture is the third in the SAB’s Last Lecture series at WVU Tech, which asks professors to present their final lecture.
“The idea is that, if this is the last lecture you were ever going to present, what is it that you would want to share with students. It always makes for an interesting lecture, and it gives professors a chance to speak about those things that interest them, things they don’t teach in the classroom,” said Director of Student Activities, Emily Sands.
Colleges and universities have hosted last lecture series for years, and the concept received national attention when Carnegie Mellon University professor, Randy Pausch, gave his last lecture “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams” in 2007 after a terminal pancreatic cancer diagnosis.
Dr. Rakes was selected by students and the SAB for his varied life experiences, which include his work with a timber crew at the young age of 14, military experience, two decades in the coal industry, a lifetime of traveling and recording with musicians and twenty years of teaching at the college level.
“Dr. Rakes has lived enough lifetimes for three people,” said Sands. “His lecture is an opportunity for students to see that professors don’t spend their whole lives teaching – they lead rich lives outside of the classroom, just like students.”
The SAB will serve refreshments at the lecture and a Q&A session will follow Dr. Rakes’ presentation. WVU Tech alumni in the area are encouraged to attend.