Professor gifts his prize money to WKU Study Abroad students

Published: Oct. 12, 2016 at 6:37 PM CDT
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A whole lot of studying, for a whole lot of cash, according to WKU Associate Professor for Art History, Guy Jordan.

"It really is a lot of flash cards. Lists of things, I have notebooks filled with lists of trivia, kind of things people like to ask all the time. It's basically just a lot of work, sitting in coffee shops, tea houses, flipping through flash cards, staying up late, getting up early, you know it's like the Rocky montage, but with flashcards."

Studying that paid off the professor. This past summer, Guy Jordan walked on to the set of 500 Questions and eventually left with $169,000. Money, he says, that has the opportunity to influence higher learning for his students.

"The host of the show asked me on air. I thought what was important to me, and the thing that came to mind was to help students study abroad," Guy Jordan added.

To show how much he believes in the magic of hands-on learning, Guy Jordan gifted every student who is studying abroad in Venice next summer along with him and other faculty members $500 towards scholarships. Multiply that by sixteen students, and you get an $8,000 donation total.

"To get students to see art and art history overseas, to see these things in person, is so important I think for art history education. It's one thing to show an image of a cathedral, or a great church or a great palace in class, but buildings like that are meant to be experienced."

A generous offer that Erin Greunke, WKU Coordinator for the Faculty-Led Study Abroad Program, says hasn't gone unnoticed.

"This just shows a great amount of generosity on his behalf. He's a fun guy anyway, and from what I've heard from his students, he's a great teacher."

Although the WKU professor is happy to provide some financial comfort to the students, Guy Jordan says the real joy comes when he sees the students' reactions.

"I'm really looking forward to seeing their eyes when they walk in to San Marco, that's what I'm really looking forward to seeing. Their eyes when they see these things. They aren't going to believe how amazing these things are," Guy Jordan added.

Reactions, that are priceless for higher learning while studying abroad.

Although Guy Jordan says he's remorseful there are only 16 student spots for the trip which are already filled, he, along with other faculty members and the students will head to Venice, Italy for two weeks on June 13th, 2017.