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Professor and pilot 

Hans Schmidt

By: Nicole Graham, Lion’s Eye staff writer,

Penn State Brandywine Communications Professor Hans Schmidt tells his story of going from pilot to professor.

Schmidt began his career working his way through school as a journalist. Schmidt attended West Chester University for his undergrad degree; he went to Temple University for his masters and post doctorate degree in media communications, all while working as a reporter for six years.

After graduate school, Schmidt worked as a professor in Media Communications at Temple, Alvernia and West Chester universities.

“Dr. Schmidt is an excellent educator who’s very passionate and knowledgeable about each subject that he teaches,” Will Gruehn, a Corporate Communications senior, said.

Gruehn’s newswriting classmate and fellow senior, Joel Koshy, agrees.

“Dr. Schmidt is a wonderful professor,” Koshy said. “He knows how to keep his students motivated and engaged in class.”

Schmidt has taught at Penn State Brandywine since 2011. Schmidt teaches newswriting among other communication-based courses.

“Dr. Schmidt is a good professor,” Mike Daly, another corporate communications major, said. “He does a good job applying what we learn in class to real-world context.”

Schmidt says that since he has been teaching classes in sports writing he has been inspired to study women in sports journalism.

“Teaching sporting, what struck me as curious is that all of my past students were men and I wonder why there were not more women interested in sports journalism,” Schmidt said.

Taking a break from women’s sports journalism studies, Schmidt has also embarked on a new venture of researching environmental journalism. Schmidt says that he studies the changes in the environment.

And that’s not all Schmidt is interested in. Schmidt has always had dreams of becoming a pilot.

“I always wanted to be a pilot since childhood,” Schmidt said. “Near the end of my Ph.D., I decided to take a class and I loved it.  I wish I could fly more but flying planes is an expensive hobby.”

With Schmidt’s demanding schedule he rarely flies anymore. Nevertheless, Schmidt says there is nothing like being in the air.

When it comes to Schmidt’s personal life, he has been happily married for 4 years. He is the straight laced older brother to one sibling, a younger brother whom Schmidt says is fun and free spirted.

Named after his father, Schmidt says his first name “Hans” is the German equivalent to the name John, which is his father’s first name. For students studying communications, it’s a name one will get to know.


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