• My Experience of Teaching a Travel Writing Course

    I’ve been pretty fortunate to have the opportunity to teach a course called Special Topics in Travel Writing at Stevenson University, where I am a full-time professor. It’s one of my favorite courses to teach, and for years in another course I teach called Feature Writing, we cover travel writing as part of the curriculum. To be able to teach travel writing as a semester-long, intensive 400-level course is something I treasure. The students in my class are required to each pick a location relatively local to our region. Some explore cities or towns in Maryland, some in Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware, Washington, D.C. or any other destination that they…

  • Answering the Question: Where Is Home?

    Travel writer Pico Iyer’s Ted Talk is one of my absolute favorites. Presently, my students in feature writing are embarking on writing a travel feature. We’ve talked about travel writing and what it takes to construct a meaningful piece, the elements to include, and the amount of yourself you must put into it to engage readers. Today, we discussed Taras Grescoe’s piece from National Geographic Traveler called “Roman Holiday,” titled after the 1953 film starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn, in which he documents his trip to Rome in search of his own Audrey Hepburn, and allows the plot of the film to guide his trip. It’s a fun read,…

  • Proud of My Travel Writers

    * * * The semester is over, and now the students are taking final exams. I have completed teaching a Special Topics in Local Travel Writing course in our Business Communication department at Stevenson University, and I have one thing to say. I loved it. As any form of travel is wont to do, a true travel experience tends to have the ability to open our minds—and our hearts. My students were posed the task of traveling like a travel writer, spending two days in their selected place of choice, and then writing about it. I have to say, the topics were varied and interesting. Each student put his or…