On one of the first days of English Composition, Professor Prues stood up on the podium in Alter and started dancing. I don’t remember what prompted this, but I knew then he wasn’t like my other professors.
A few weeks later, he stood in front of our class and cried after telling us his dog had recently passed away. He told us the dog was like a child to him. I don’t think many professors cry in front of their students.
I came into college like most first-years, not knowing what I wanted to major in. I never thought it would be a required intro English course
that helped me decide what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I am forever indebted to Professor Prues for his assignment of writing about pressing issues our society was currently facing. We made a giant list on the board in class and he encouraged us to pick something we didn’t know
much about. It was that assignment that piqued my interest in sexual violence and ultimately made me decide to dedicate a career to it.
I remember the positive comments he left on my paper and the conversations we had about it after. Every time I saw him on campus after that semester, he would say hello and ask how I was doing. He genuinely seemed to care; he would stop whatever he was doing and stand for a few minutes to talk to me. He asked if I was still doing sexual violence prevention work and would always say he remembered the paper I wrote my first year.
About a year ago I emailed Professor Prues to invite him to EmpowerXU’s events during Sexual Assault Awareness Month. This was his response:
“Hi Maryn. Gosh, seems like I haven’t seen you in so long! Thank you for sending this to me; I’ll try to make one or more events. I’m so proud that you are the president (of EmpowerXU) and speaking out against sexual assault. As we’ve discussed, it’s way too prevalent and far too damaging. I applaud what you do!! Thanks again for including me in this email. Sending you peace, Prof Prues.”
That was probably the last time we were in contact. Professor Prues always
made you feel at home. Whenever I ran into him on campus, it would make my day and would always leave me feeling better than I had before.
He had kind eyes and always looked at you intently while you were speaking with him. Xavier will not be the same without his animated and
Sending you peace, wherever you are, Professor Prues. You will be incredibly missed and always fondly remembered.