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John B. Dalbor

Professor Emeritus of Spanish



I earned my BA in journalism (1951) and my MA in Spanish (1953) from Penn State.  From 1953 to 1955 I served in the U.S. Army and was stationed with the Army Security Agency in Germany. I then got my Ph.D. in Romance Languages and Literatures from Michigan (1961), where I was a TA in Spanish and also an instructor in ESL. I returned to Penn State as an instructor in 1958 and retired as a full professor in 1993. I also taught in a Summer NDEA (National Defense Education Act) Institute for French and Spanish teachers at Bucknell (1962).

At Penn State I taught courses in Spanish language and linguistics, general linguistics, and a few in Spanish literature — first in the Dept. of Romance Languages (1958–63) and then in the Department of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese, established when the former department was split.

I supervised the basic Spanish courses and teaching assistants for 11 years and the intermediate and advanced Spanish language courses for 20 years. I directed the Departmental placement and credit exams for 17. I directed over 50 MA essays in Spanish linguistics and was director or co-director of five Ph.D. dissertations in Spanish linguistics and bilingual education.

I delivered papers in Spanish language, linguistics, and pedagogy and published book reviews in these fields in Hispania, Modern Language Journal, etc. I also published articles in Spanish linguistics—particularly phonetics and dialectology—in Hispania, Hispanic Journal, Hispanic Linguistics, etc. I was the editor, co-editor, author, or co-author of Imaginación y fantasía (six editions), Oral Spanish Review, Beginning College Spanish, Spanish Pronunciation (three editions), and Spanish in Review (two editions).

Since retirement, except for doing revisions of two of the above books, I have turned my attention to non-professional endeavors. My wife and I have done a modest amount of traveling in the United States.  For several years I was a sound-system operator and coordinator for St. Paul's United Methodist Church in State College. For several years I delivered for State College Meals on Wheels. For 25 years I have written columns in the Penn State Wrestling Club News on the history of Penn State wrestling. Also as part of the celebration of a century of Penn State wrestling (1909–2008), I have been the lead writer for a book, A Century of Penn State Wrestling, to be published in early Summer 2008.  I also like to play the guitar from time to time and play bridge regularly in a group. I am currently a volunteer doing data entry at Centre Volunteers in Medicine, a free medical clinic available to the 11,000 people in Centre Country without health insurance.