Suzanne Toczyski earned a BA in French from UB and is now a Professor of French at Sonoma State University.
"In 1985, during my junior year at UB, my fiancé (now husband) encouraged me to apply to graduate school, at which point I had to choose between my two loves, math and French. I knew I wanted to teach, and Dr. Ludwig – a most excellent advisor – sat down with me during my first year to map out a plan for completing a double major with a teacher ed minor in four years. Pondering my future choices, I thought of the inspiring teachers I had had at UB: Dr. Benay, who gave me a true love for seventeenth-century theater (which became the subject of my dissertation), Dr. Ludwig, who helped me to appreciate language in its most fundamental elements, Dr. Simon, whose conversations about modern theater were fascinating – and the choice was relatively easy. (Study abroad in Grenoble was also a huge plus!)
I earned my PhD in French in 1994, taught briefly at the University of Washington and Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma while my husband was doing his post-doc, and then accepted a position at Sonoma State University, where I have now taught for almost twenty years. I hope my students leave SSU with fond memories of their work with the faculty here, and a real passion for French language and francophone literature and culture. I’m also happy to note that some of my own students have gone on to MA and PhD programs in French (at Johns Hopkins, UC-Davis, UC-Berkeley, San Francisco State, etc.), so the baton is being passed on. I’m very grateful to UB for a solid grounding in French!" – Suzanne Toczyski