History Rock Star Professor Catherine Forslund
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  • Title: Professor of History, History Department Chair
  • Hometown: Lincolnshire, Ill.
  • Degrees: Bachelor of Arts in History (University of Illinois), Master of Arts in History and Ph.D. in History (Washington University)
  • Years at RC: 13

The first time Catherine Forslund visited Rockford University was in 1972, as a prospective student on an overnight stay. "It was to appease my proud alumna mother Jacquelyn Silcroft Forslund, class of ’46,” Catherine says. Though Catherine decided to be a student elsewhere, she certainly can’t imagine teaching anywhere else.

"I love the variety of traditional and non-traditional-aged students; commuter students and residential – no semester is ever the same,” she says, "It keeps me guessing.”

Catherine enjoys the diversity of her classroom, and credits her students with making what she does so rewarding. Recently, a student stopped Catherine in the hall to tell her that, while watching the news with her mother, the student drew on what she learned in Catherine’s class to explain to her mother the situation being described by the reporter. "That student was so grateful for my class,” shares Catherine. It is those moments that remind her why she teaches. "I want students to appreciate the value of history,” she says, "to see it as more than a dry collection of dates and names, and to apply it in their daily lives.” That is why Catherine is a Rockford University Rock Star Professor.

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