Growing up in Timisoara, Romania, a small town in western Romania near the border of Serbia and Hungary, a young Professor Farca knew at an early age that she wanted to become a professor of linguistics and literature. “In first grade, I realized I was not good at math at all, I got too many Cs in physics and chemistry. I have always enjoyed reading and writing, so I understood at an early age that literature and teaching would come naturally to me. I was not wrong.” For the last ten years, Professor Farca has been living stateside with her husband.
Initially moving to Denver with her husband, due to his job working at an optics company in Denver, Professor Farca swiftly decided that she needed to find a teaching job in Colorado. Professor Farca states, “I feel fortunate to teach at Mines, an engineering school, because I have many engineers in my family; my parents, brother and grandfathers have all been engineers.” Professor Farca has been working at the Colorado School of Mines since 2008 and she has been very impressed with the students that she has taught. “Many of my students say they do not like to read and write, but in reality, they are remarkably gifted writers and critical thinkers.” Professor Farca presents the duality of every decision in the Nature and Human Values classes that she teaches. She presents the fact that no issue is ever simply presented as a black and white problem. She promotes her students to speak freely in class and offers a very comfortable environment where all opinions are welcomed and debated. When discussions begin to settle in Professor Farca’s classroom, she likes to add small questions so that the students open their minds to both sides of an argument.
Earning her Ph.D. in English Literature and her second MA at Oklahoma State University, she also received an education at West University at Timisoara, where she earned her first MA in linguistics and her first BA in English and Romanian Literature and Languages. Professor Farca recently used all of her education to co-author a book for the Nature and Human Values course. “Along with my talented colleagues, Courtney Holles and Shira Richman, I wrote A Student’s Guide to Nature and Human Values.” Professor Farca explained, “The textbook will help students write and revise papers for Nature and Human Values, understand ethical theories, and become more adept at research. Not only did she work on this textbook for students, she also had a very productive summer. “I revised my dissertation, Roots to Routes: Contemporary Indigenous Fiction by Women Writers in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The book is expected to publish next year,” says Professor Farca.
Of course, every professor at the Colorado School of Mines has a life outside of work and grading papers, and Professor Farca is no different in this regard. “I will tell you three things: I can live on an ice cream-only diet (chocolate works too), my favorite tennis player is Rafael Nadal, and I root for A.C. Milan, the Italian soccer team.” The Colorado School of Mines is proud to have a professor as intellectual as Professor Paula A. Farca.