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John Hudson, former assistant professor of English, is committed to helping students build on their strengths - both literally and figuratively. In fact, when he is not teaching undergraduates in one of his writing courses, he is sweating it out with them in the gym as the coach of UHD's world-record-holding powerlifting team.
For his dedication to students, both inside and outside of the classroom, Hudson was nominated for UHD's 2013 "Excellence in Service" faculty award.
"Both as a professor and a coach, I seek to help students attack their weaknesses while continually honing their strengths," he said. "By working hand-in-hand with students, my goal is always to encourage them to focus on what they do well, which increases their self-confidence and fuels their passion to succeed."
Hudson believes that the best way to teach writing is to work with students using the tutorial model, which gives budding writers the chance to build on the concepts taught in class and learn from their individual critiques in a more one-on-one setting. He encourages his students to utilize office hours to review revisions of their own work and learn helpful techniques to improve their writing style.
Hudson appreciates the transformation that occurs in self-conscious students when he makes the effort to raise their expectations. "I've found that you can completely change a student's life when you invest in their success and encourage them to achieve. I want my students to have big goals and big dreams - in academics, in powerlifting and in life.
Hudson's goal is to take students from "I can't" to "I can" to "I will."
A powerlifter himself, Hudson has competed in the sport for nearly 30 years and reinforces to his student lifters that technique and mental discipline are essential to success - a message that is also relevant for his student writers.
Hudson also serves as faculty advisor for Safe Zone, a student organization that provides an environment of support for all students, regardless of sexual orientation.
"I always look forward to going to class because we have so much diversity at UHD," Hudson said. "I am always excited to walk into the classroom, hear students' ideas and learn from each other."
In fall 2013, UHD named Hudson as the director of its new Center for Student Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Hudson decided to transition to this non-teaching role to enhance the University's environment of inclusion for students of all backgrounds.
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Last updated or reviewed on 11/26/13