October 23, 2019
By Tara Forste, Marketing/PR Intern
For the past 26 years, Philadelphia native Dr. Stephen Knapp has called ASU-Beebe home. Knapp is known on campus for teaching English I & II, World Literature I & II, as well as advising students, and creating lasting friendships.
Dr. Knapp began his career as an English professor in 1980 after a lifelong love of reading and the analytical study of stories led him to the English profession. It is apparent that he is doing what he loves because when asked what he found unique about teaching, he responded, “It gives one a tremendous opportunity to be a lifelong learner.”
He attended New College at Hofstra University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in humanities and a master’s degree in English. Later, he studied at the University of Toronto, where he earned his doctorate in English. Before joining the faculty at ASU-Beebe, Knapp spent nearly 14 years in the United States Air Force as both a Squadron Commander, and a professor, teaching night classes. He would eventually teach English at the U.S.A.F. Academy from 1982 to 1987.
Aside from his duties in the classroom and administratively at ASU-Beebe, Dr. Knapp sponsors the Gamma Beta Phi Honor’s Society and the ASU-Beebe Honor’s Club. He encourages students to find their individual passions and dedicate their lives to them. Quoting one of his favorite plays, Hamlet, he says, “The readiness is all,” meaning that fate cannot be controlled, and whatever happens, it is necessary to be adaptable.
Dr. Knapp credits his wonderful wife and fellow teacher, Linda, as his source of inspiration, stating that he enjoys being able to bounce ideas off her and values her input. The couple have been married for 41 years and have two daughters, Carrie and Christie. They also have two grandchildren, Addie and James.
Knapp says in his free time he enjoys watching westerns, writing, and reading, of course. His favorite author is William Faulkner; favorite novel is Great Expectations by Charles Dickens; favorite classical work, The Odyssey and his three favorite poets are: Robert Frost, William Blake, and Charles Baudelaire.
When asked what he considers his “claim to fame,” Dr. Knapp shared that before his time in the military he worked in retail for about six months, with another type of professor, one we’ve known as a Nutty Professor. While selling shoes on Long Island, NY. he worked alongside 18-year-old aspiring comedian Eddie Murphy. Shortly after working with Eddie, Dr. Knapp saw him on television one night and exclaimed to his wife Linda, “that’s Eddie, Eddie from work!” and the rest is history.
Life as a Vanguard is a social media series produced by the ASUB Office of Marketing and Public Relations. These are ‘get to know’ articles of interest about students, faculty, and staff within the Vanguard campus community.