The Student Voice of Coastal Carolina University



Retiring professors look toward future

After teaching for almost two decades, professors Dan Albergotti and Donald Sloan have decided to retire from Coastal Carolina University.Albergotti and Sloan are two of many faculty members who celebrated their retirement at an event hosted on March 21.

Dan Albergotti, professor of English:

Albergotti got his master’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2003. Just two years later, he joined the CCU English department. During his 19 years of teaching at Coastal, he taught literature and creative writing.

However– his specialty is poetry writing and he has written a couple of full-length poetry books himself. He said he has always had a passion for poetry and writing as a kid, but his inspiration for becoming a teacher started in college.

“I was inspired by some of my college English professors,” Albergotti said. “Because they just made writing come alive in such a way that it made me want to be able to do that for someone else.”

In the classroom, he has assisted his students in studying elements of stanzas and alliteration. In education, he emphasized the importance of comprehension and reading the writing they wanted to mirror.


Albergotti recalled a particular first assignment that required his class to write a poem in an exercise he called “the kitchen sink”; his students would have to complete certain requirements for their poems, such as using the word “cantaloupe.” 


“They bring that word in their poem, metaphorically,” he said, “and it’s always been a delight to see them respond to that assignment.” 


Even though he’s retiring, he’ll still be putting energy into his writing, releasing writings, and continuing his career as a poet, including a full-length collection planned for fall 2024. Looking back on his career, he said his only regrets were the times he didn’t have much energy to give. 


“You know, if you’re a poet or a writer, you never put down the pen for good,” Albergotti said. “You’re that until you’re gone, I think.” 

Donald Sloan, professor of music:

Sloan earned his Ph.D. from the University of Rochester in 1985 and has been at Coastal for 16 years. He was drawn to CCU as it seemed to be a growing campus.  


“A lot of other schools were making cuts and at the school where I was, I didn’t think that the prospects were going to be good over the next 15 years or so,” Sloan said. “And it turns out, I was right.” 


Sloan is well-versed in teaching music theory. However, he admits it can be a bit difficult for students to understand. While it’s important, it’s not the reason it drew his students into music. 


As an educator, Sloan wanted to foster students to become complete musicians who can serve the world around them. 


“Artists are healers,” he said. “We’re people that help other people become whole, become in touch with themselves and with each other.” 


As his days of teaching come to a close, Sloan said he’s excited to pursue passions that he has little-to-no time for. To him, this looks like writing more music and collaborating with a colleague to produce a textbook. 


Sloan also comes from a Jewish background and has some involvement in Holocaust education, which helps motivate him to stay active.  


“My dad was a Holocaust survivor, and I can carry on that legacy also,” he said. “I hope to you know, work to help keep that history alive and the lessons that it teaches. I’m not going to sit around all day watching soap operas.” 


In his work, Sloan never let his introverted personality stop him from helping his students.  


“I’ve had to learn to, you know, create a, kind of, public persona because it’s not something that comes naturally to me,” Sloan said. 


Sloan expressed that he had no regrets about writing and teaching music. In the end, he was grateful to be able to make an impact on his students.  


“I enjoy watching old students grow, I enjoy seeing them do recitals, even though I don’t teach them their instruments,” he said. “I enjoy seeing them at graduation as different people than when I first met them coming in.” 

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