English professor, film minor catalyst to retire after 27 years on the Hill

Kennedy Gayheart, News Reporter

Ted Hovet, a professor in the English department and a film studies minor advisor, is retiring after 27 years of teaching on the Hill.

Hovet arrived at WKU in 1995 after graduating from Duke University with an English PhD. Not only did he end up teaching English courses, but he expanded his curriculum to offer some film classes as well. 

Hovet has always had a strong interest in film. In the fall of 2000, with the help of other departments and in collaboration with the WKU School of Media, Hovet and his team had created the amount of courses necessary to offer an interdisciplinary film minor. 

“It took a real team, but I think the thing I liked most about helping with that and working with my colleagues is we always were thinking about it as a student-centered course,” Hovet said. 

Following the success of the film minor, WKU began offering a film major in 2010 for students who wanted to focus on the production side of film rather than film studies. 

Hovet said his favorite things about teaching are the opportunities to collaborate with other people and being able to track the success of his former students. He will miss being in the classroom, but Hovet said he is grateful to have had a career filled with his passions. 

“You know, it’s rare to be able to have a profession to do something that’s very enjoyable, but at the same time, I think that’s exactly the right time to leave,” Hovet said. “Because I don’t want to wait so long that I start losing my passion.”

Hovet said he hopes the programs has been involved in at WKU will continue to adapt and flourish after his departure, welcoming future change.

“[The things I have been involved in] should change, I don’t expect them to be the same and that’s the whole point of bringing in new people,” Hovet said. 

Once he retires, Hovet plans to relocate back to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he and his wife went to college. He said he wants to play retirement by ear.

“I think maybe what I need to do is just keep my ears and eyes open and see what is out there and see what connects with me once I’m in this new stage of life,” Hovet said. “I’m excited about it.”

News Reporter Kennedy Gayheart can be reached at [email protected]