In order to get to the heart of what Buffalo is all about, I had the pleasure of interviewing Professor Barbara Bono, an English Professor at the University at Buffalo that has taught for over 35 years. She knows all there is to know about Shakespeare, and has a passion and enthusiasm for teaching the material that keeps all of her students engaged and entertained.
My interview touched on topics such as what she enjoys most about Buffalo and a bit about reflecting on her time as an educator and what she will miss most. Check out the interview below:
Q: What is your favorite thing about Buffalo?
Professor Bono: The two degrees of separation characteristic of a regional city with a lot of history and connections: if I don’t know someone or about something myself, I can find out easily by asking someone who does.
Q: How long have you taught at UB?
Professor Bono: 35 years.
Q: Wow, that is quite a tenure! When you look and reflect back, what will you miss most about your time here?
Professor Bono: My students
Q: Who inspired you most in college?
Professor Bono: There were a whole lot of people, including my classmate/husband early modern historian of science Jim Bono, to whom next June I’ll be married for 50 years, and our circle of serious student/radical undergraduate friends. But there were many teachers, including the demanding medievalist, Dr. Peggy Amassian, who got me started as an English major, and my still-friend and colleague, then ABD and now Dr. Sara van den Berg, who taught my senior honors seminar mon Shakespeare and modern drama.
Q: Besides teaching, I know you are very involved in the community. What is your favorite community organization that you are a part of?
Professor Bono: The University Heights Tool Library because I love to make things and to garden, and it supplies the know-how and tool to do so. But also because it does so in a share-economy/ community building framework which has allowed me to bridge town/gown and socii/economic divides. And it is led by a charismatic recent UB graduate, BA/MUP Darren Cotton—I love engaged millennials.
I can't thank Professor Bono enough