Dr. Arnold Hite is the 1998 and 2010 Excellence in Teaching Award Recipient. Dr. Arnold Hite is originally from Florence, South Carolina. The Professor of Economics and Dean of the School of Business initially had no inclinations towards teaching, but decided to go to graduate school in economics simply because he loved the subject. He earned his masters degree in Economics from Clemson University and his Ph.D. in Economics from Texas A & M. While in graduate school, Dr. Hite was required to run tutoring sessions twice a week. Realizing how much he enjoyed helping students, Dr. Hite decided to become a college professor.
Dr. Hite came to Charleston Southern University in 1990, because he was looking for a small, teaching-oriented college. Although he has worked at prestigious universities such as Clemson, UNC, Texas A & M, and the Citadel, Dr. Hite claims that CSU is the best place hes worked because of its "emphasis on having personal relationships with students." The atmosphere at CSU allows him to act upon his natural inclination towards helping students who are struggling and relating to students on their own level.
In the classroom, Dr. Hite enjoys finding unusual examples of economic principles to share with his students. For instance, he explains the fundamental principle of dimensional marginal utility by asking students about the one thing they love more than anything. The principle states that the more you use something, the less you want to use it, so if a student says "my girlfriend," then Dr. Hite asks him if he would still want to be with his girlfriend just as much if he were with her 24 hours a day for an extended period of time. Whether it is spending time with girlfriends, watching football, or eating pizza, students usually get the point. Dr. Hite is quick to point out that economics is a social science. "Its the study of human behavior." Most people think its about making money, but Dr. Hite asserts, "I dont even play the stockmarket."
Dr. Hites teaching excellence stems from the fact that he simply loves to help students learn. "Everybody enjoys bright students, but I have a soft spot for students with problems," he says. Dr. Hite tries to help students improve their performance by instructing them on how to be organized and disciplined in their study habits. Although every student is different, he notes that the problem can often be fixed by something as simple as helping a student learn how to study correctly.
Dr. Hite has many hobbies and interests outside of economics. He is an avid environmentalist and feels that his training in economics gives him an edge because it helps him to look for reasonable, market-driven solutions to environmental problems. Dr. Hite enjoys water sports, deep-woods camping, and jogging. In fact, he has run in the New York City Marathon and competes with Dr. Hunter, CSU President, every year in the Homecoming Fun Run. Dr. Hite also loves old cars. He owns two amphibious cars that he restored himself, which show up in the Homecoming parade every year. Dr. Hite enjoys sharing his unique interests with students because he feels that it helps him relate to them as well as helping them to see him as more than just a teacher. Dr. Hite enjoys mixing elements of his personal life with his professional life, stating, "Interacting with students keeps me young."
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