Behind the Desk: Christopher Kroft, Communication Professor

Zachary Staab
Assoc. News Editor

1. How long have you been teaching at Millersville University?
This is my second semester.
2. What classes do you teach at MU? And do you teach classes at other universities?
I have taught Fundamentals of Speech and Organizational Communications at Millersville. I’ve taught classes on public speaking and interpersonal communication at York College and Penn State for about five years.
3. Where did you go to school?
Undergrad at York College
Masters at Johns Hopkins
Currently finishing my D.Ed. at Penn State. My research centers on the public speaking experiences of individuals with mood disorders.

Professor Kroft preparing his notes for class.
Professor Kroft preparing his notes for class.

4. Why did you become a teacher?
I became a teacher for two reasons. First, I’ve always loved public speaking. I still remember my first speech to a “big” audience. It was about the United States flag–I was in second grade and delivered it to all of the parents in my school district. Through junior high and high school I participated on public speaking teams. While on these teams, sometimes I did well, at other times not so well. But I always had fun with public speaking and saw it as an important skill. Once I got to college I found out that institutions have speech communication requirements and degrees. I discovered that people actually get paid to teach this activity which I love so much. After that, I knew exactly where my career would take me. Second, I love the higher education setting. From being an undergrad to my work today, I really enjoy the energy which exists on college campuses. I became a teacher because a big part of me simply never wanted to leave school.
5. Have you always wanted to be a teacher?
Once I knew that I could teach Speech Communications, absolutely!!
6. What do you like most about being a teacher at MU?
I’m relatively new to the campus so I am still getting my bearings. I enjoy the camaraderie I see between students at Millersville. That kind of support between students is helpful in public speaking courses; it quells anxiety. Students here are academically driven while maintaining an amount of levity which is ideal for public speaking. I am familiar with the research of a few faculty members at Millersville and see great value in what they have undertaken–excellent research with insightful goals and purposes. And, I can walk to the SugarBowl anytime I want to.
7. What are your hobbies or special interests?
I have a son, Antonio, who is nine. Whenever I am not working I’m spending time with him. He’s about to earn his black belt in tae kwon do–look out everyone!
8. Do you have any advice for students who are thinking about earning a degree in education?
Did you want me to answer this question about earning a degree in education or communication?
9. What teaching techniques do you utilize in the classroom?
I think that the best teachers tend to be excellent story tellers. Relating personal stories to the academic knowledge being gained in class builds a bridge between student and educator.
10. Is there any advice or knowledge you would like to bestow upon the MU students and/or faculty?
It’s an old saying, but is absolutely true: Find a profession you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.