Fisher College Faculty
Natalie Spadorcia Sforza
- Assistant Professor, English
- B.A., English, Suffolk University
- M.A., English, Simmons College
- Office: 118 Beacon Street, 3rd Floor
- Tel. 617-236-5468
- E-mail: email@example.com
My grandmother used to tell me that I would become a teacher and marry a doctor. So I went to college. However, I didn't plan on becoming a teacher or finding a pre-med student to marry. I went because I thought that was what I should do. It didn't hurt that I loved books too.
Growing up my home was filled with books. My mom read to me often and her junior college textbooks were always hanging around. We used her law book to prop up a broken window in her bedroom. I remember risking a few fingers because I liked to go through it; I liked the old book smell and the feel of the pages. Even though I didn't understand it, I liked to hold it. My mom understood this and is fond of telling me she "never said no to a book." It seemed natural that I did well in school, though English was never my favorite subject.
It was not until I went to Suffolk University for my Bachelor's Degree that I began to realize half of my grandmother's dream...not right away though. I began as an undeclared major and stayed that way until the very last second. I didn't know what I wanted to do, so I took all my general education courses. I remember my Integrated Studies professor, Dr. David Robbins (he said to call him Dave but I could never muster the courage to do so) told us not to let anyone pressure us into declaring a major. "What was a major anyway," he'd muse. "So you take eight to ten more classes in something than the next person. That doesn't make you an expert."
Despite my parents always asking me what my major was, I took his advice. I enrolled in psychology, history, education, art, literature, biology, calculus (I still have the scars to prove it), and finished my gen ed courses by the end of my sophomore year. I had a free elective to fulfill, and I saw an upper level poetry class was open. I figured I'd try it.
After crying through identification exams every Friday, I got the knack of them, and discovered that I liked poetry. I remember one poem with its image of woman whose golden hair flowed behind her. The poet used a field of wheat as a metaphor to describe how beautiful she was. I never forgot that image, and I learned how powerful language can be. I also learned how powerful literature could be when Professor McKinley in EN101 acted out Anton Chekov's "Misery" and brought a class of underachieving freshmen to their knees.
While I was figuring out poetry, my advisor told me that I NEEDED to choose a major. So I chose English. I figured if I could pass Dr. Johnson's Friday exams, I could do anything English-y. Meanwhile I was making money tutoring at the learning center. Combining those experiences, I realized I wanted to teach people English. After I earned my Master's degree from Simmons College, I was an adjunct at Bunker Hill Community College, Mount Ida, and Suffolk University. I have been at Fisher College since 1997 teaching literature and writing at all levels, short stories, novels, and creative writing.
One thing I enjoy about Fisher is that I feel a connection to many students here. They may not be sure of what they want to do, but they can take advantage of the opportunities being a good writer and reader will bring them. I enjoy helping students gain skills that will be invaluable in any field at any time. I often tell my students that if they can write, read, communicate, and see problems from different perspectives, then they can do anything. I'm not sure they always believe me, so I keep telling them.
I am instilling the love of books in my daughters, Chiara and Gabriella. I hope language and images bring them as much joy as they bring me. And if they end up marrying doctors, that will be good too.