Beloved UA Prof Announces Retirement with Spoof Draft Declaration
After 14 years of teaching at the University of Alabama, beloved English professor Brian Oliu is moving on with his life and pursuing new opportunities. On Tuesday, Oliu took to Twitter to announce his retirement at the end of the semester with a spoof of the traditional NFL Draft declaration graphics Tide football fans have grown so accustomed to seeing.
Known affectionately as the "poet laureate of Gump Twitter," Oliu has received multiple awards during his time at the Capstone and published five anthologies of essays. He has garnered a 5/5 rating on the popular website "Rate My Professors," with 98% of students saying they would take a class with him again.
"When I first stepped into the hallowed halls of the English building I knew that this place was special. What I did not know is how much it would change me. Who knew that a mediocre web blogger would go on to publish five full-length essay collections in the shadow of Bryant-Denny stadium, take home multiple teaching awards, and eat so many left-over mail room Krispy Kreme donuts," said Oliu.
"Teaching students at UA has been one of the great privileges of my life - to play a small part in their educational journey is something I never take lightly. I think about them often, and I hope that they, every once in a while, remember their loud and gregarious English teacher who would make them write about a tree he saw on the walk to class, or why writing is important because the world is a text, or how all the modernist writers hated each other, or to not be afraid of Indesign and all its text wrapped nonsense. To not be afraid to try, because there is always beauty in the attempt - that this is where learning is done: through process, not product. To love our students is to love their work, whatever form it may take."
True joy is seeing the paths that my former students take: I've had the excitement of seeing former student athletes literally achieve their childhood dreams live on television, and that will never get old. I joke that i wish that i would get an espn push notification for all of my students' achievements: they are artists, writers, comedians, actors, soldiers, models, nurses, teachers, small-business owners, literary agents, chefs, musicians, journalists, lawyers, activists, parents, troublemakers, champions, all of them. Some might call them legends."
"For me, it is time for a new path. I am announcing my retirement from the University of Alabama at the end of this semester. And while i don't think they're going to retire my jersey and have it dangling over the dangerous 3rd floor balcony of the english building, I don't need it. The work that has been done exists outside of the classroom. My students' successes are my successes. I will carry my time here with me always, as I hope y'all continue to do as you traverse your wild and well-lived dreams."
"Roll Tide forever, B Oliu."