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Photo of Susan Irons, taken by Sarah Boyd



Dr. Irons’s professional focus is the student learning experience in the undergraduate classroom. She teaches courses in Literature of the American South, American Literature, Approaches to Regional Theatre, and Business Communication. In literature courses, she endeavors to create a generous intellectual community that fosters lively examination and discussion of the texts.  Among the course goals are insights into the cultural work of each text and reflection upon how it informs our perspectives on our contemporary world. In business communication classes, the emphasis is on clear, concise, effective, and ethical written and oral communication strategies. These strategies are critical tools within all organizations and professions.

As director of the Frank B. Hanes Writer-in-Residence Program and the Thomas Wolfe Prize and Lecture, Dr. Irons facilitates the visits of major writers of our time to our campus. The goals of both programs are to provide our creative writing students with access to significant writers of our time and to enrich Carolina’s literary culture, goals Dr. Irons enthusiastically supports.

Her current research interests include contemporary southern literature, southern literary anthologies, and pedagogy for teaching oral presentations.


(2001, PhD. English, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill




  • Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, 2011
  • Joseph Flora Award for Teaching Excellence 2009-1010
  • James R. Gaskin Award for “excellence in teaching Composition” 1996