March 01, 2005

In Memoriam

Alan Hankin, a professor at Emerson College, died today aged 56.

Professor Hankin had the always challenging task of teaching science to liberal arts students, most of whom believed that if something was worth knowing it had to fit on a TV screen. But that never stopped him from doing his job with incredible amounts of respect and genuine care for his students, to whom he was completely devoted. He would regularly wake up at 5am to make the commute to Boston for his morning seminars, and annualy managed the prodigious feat of spending a week on a boat on a field trip with his Marine Biology class. The year he taught my Honours seminar on evolution, he thought it so necessary that we visit the American Museum of Natural History, he single-handedly raised enough money so that 80 students could visit New York for the weekend without having to pay a cent.

His kind encouragement and gentle harassment ensured that I didn't laze and bullshit my way through four years of Emerson, and for that, as for everything else he did for his students, I am eternally grateful.

"There is grandeur in this view of life . . . Whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and wonderful have been, and are being evolved."
--Charles Darwin


At 14/7/09 13:15, Blogger Julia said...


Thank you... I miss my Dad so much everyday and my Brother is getting marries Saturday and I was looking for pictures and quotes to give him about Dad and I appreciate yuor loving works. Thank you.

Julia Hankin


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