Foothill College English Professor Scott Lankford

Scott Lankford, Ph.D.
Professor of English

Language Arts Division
     (650) 949-7540 voicemail

Foothill campus
Office: 6015
Office Hours:
Office Location 6015
Tuesday 1:30 - 2:30 (drop in only = no appointment)
Thursday 1:30 - 2:30 (drop in only = no appointment)
Friday 10:00-10:50 (drop in only = no appointment)
also by appointment if necessary

In collaboration with Stanford's EPIC initiative (Education Partnership to Internationalize the Curriculum) I'm piloting a Climate Change across the Curriculum program at Foothill College for Winter/Spring 2016.

Read and comment on my Daily EPICCC Blog at
Teaching Climate-Change-Across-the-Curriculum

View or Join our Climate Crisis ConneXions Facebook Group at
Foothill College Climate Changers Facebook Group

ENGL1B Honors Tues/Thurs 8:00-9:50 Friday 9:00-9:50 room 6409
ENGL1C Honors Tues/Thurs 10:00-11:50 Friday 11:00-11:50 room 6307
ENGL1B Honors Tues/Thurs/Fri 12:00-1:25 in room 6306

Course information:
ENGL1B Honors Syllabus and Essay Prompts for Spring Qtr 2016

E1BH Top Ten Ways to JumpStart Essay 1 on Marshall

ENGL1C Honors Syllabus and Essay Prompts for Spring 2016
E1CH Top Ten Ways to Kick Start Your Essay 1 on Brown

Top Ten Tips: A Student Survival Kit for Spring Qtr 2016

Friday Essay Tests Rules and Formats

Friday Rough Draft Workshop Rubric

Essay Grading Rubric

Top Ten Tips for Ravenous Reading

Top Ten Tips for Taking Timed Tests

Sample Tests

MLA Style Sample Research Paper Format

Honors Project Possibilities

Honors Group Project Prompt

Power Punctuation--Dashes

Power Punctuation (Parentheses)

Power Punctuation: Colons

Power Punctuation Semicolons

Honors Fragments and Run-Ons and Comma Splices Review

Climate Change Speakers Series Lineup for Winter-Spring 2016

Powerpoint on Narrowing Your Thesis Focus

My interests include telemark turns; trad climbs; cozy cafes; bookstores; one thousand kinds of tea; ecology; philosophy; literature; going to the gym; Tibetan yoga; surfing, snorkeling, and body boarding; guitar; trekking; Zen and Bhodi Chitta Buddhism; plus adventure travel to anywhere and everywhere on earth (including Mexico, Costa Rica, Thailand, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, China, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Burma, Brunei, the Phillipines, Taiwan, Singapore, Nepal, Colorado, Washington DC, NYC, Costa Rica, Turkey, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, France, Spain, Switzerland, the UK, Australia, Russia, and Italy).

Born in Denver, I graduated from Manual High School -- an inner-city public school with a majority African American enrollment -- and still by far the best school I ever attended.

Growing up in Colorado, my hobbies were guitar, telemark skiing, and wilderness mountaineering. My first teaching experience came as a wilderness skiing and rock-climbing instructor in Alaska, Africa, and the Rockies. In 1985 I was a member of the American Mount Everest West Ridge Expedition (you can read all about it in my teammate Ed Webster's classic book Snow in the Kingdom: My Storm Years on Everest or another teammate's book, Robert Anderson's To Everest via Antarctica). Prior to entering grad school at Stanford, I even had a brief career as a singer/songwriter, working as a warm-up act for nationally-famous performers such as Don McLean and Harry Chapin on the New England college circuit. In fact, writing songs was what first got me interested in studying poetry!

I joined the Foothill faculty in 1989 and served as Dean of Language Arts from 1994-1997. In 1991 I became the co-founder of Foothill's award-winning Cultural Diversity Center, the Foothill Gay and Lesbian Employees and Friends Association, and the Foothill student Gay/Straight Alliance. In addition to courses in College Writing, I have taught Creative Writing, Poetry, American Literature, Lesbian/Gay Literature and a variety of special-topic Honors Seminars ranging from "Lake Tahoe's Literary History" to "Contributions of Islamic Cultures to American History," to "Blogging as an Emerging Genre."


B.A. Philosophy, Williams College, 1980
M.A., Modern Thought and Literature, 1989
Ph.D., Modern Thought and Literature, 1991


My book Tahoe Beneath the Surface: The Hidden History of the World's Largest Mountain Lake was released in October of 2010 and was awarded a Bronze Medal as 2010 Nature Book of the Year by Foreword Magazine (the leading national journal of independent publishers and independent booksellers nationwide).

My previous book, Northwest Passages: From the Pen of John Muir (revised edition 1998) won the Benjamin Franklin Prize from the Independent Publishers Association.

My next book, Paris Naked will focus on the epic, if often unclothed, misadventures of Americans in Paris from Ben Franklin to Madonna.

During my 2013-2015 Spring sabbatical quarters I researched and rough-drafted a new 250,000 word book on the battle to save the largest lake on each of the 7 Continents -- including the sub-glacial lakes buried beneath the ice of Antarctica.

Faculty Committees and Student Clubs 2016
Faculty Senate
Student Equity Workgroup
Native American Heritage Month Planning Committee
Black Heritage Month Planning Committee
Asian American Heritage Month Planning Committee
LGBT Heritage Month Planning Committee
English Dept Tenure Committee
Philosophy Dept Hiring Committee
Gay/Straight Alliance Co-Advisor
FHDA Gay and Lesbian Employees and Friends (GAYLEAF)
Sustainability Committee
Student Grievances Committee
Environmental Club Advisor

Curriculum Initiatives

During the 2011/2012 academic year, I helped launch two new across-the-curriculum initiatives: The Foothill Center for a Sustainable Future (of which was a co-founder and co-director), and a collaborative effort to apply Stanford Design School founder Professor David Kelley's ideas for Teaching Creativity to the teaching of College Writing.

For 2012-2013 I joined the Stanford Human Rights Education Initiative as a Visiting Scholar to help launch a new Human Rights Across the Curriculum program focused on using social media.

In January 2014 I presented a paper on the topic of "Teaching Sustainability" at the annual Modern Language Association Conference in Chicago.

In November 2014 I presented a paper entitled "Medicated Bodies of Water: Hybrids, Hyperobjects, and the Anthropocene" at the International Seminar of Corpus Water and Body Fluids at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Timosoara, Romania.

For Winter Quarter 2015 I will be blogging on the topic of "Climate Change Across-the-Curriculum" (as part of a Foothill College Staff Development Initiative) at

For 2015-2016 I am piloting a composition-studies-based Climate Change Across the Curriculum model within the Foothill Honors Institute--in collaboration with Stanford's EPIC Program (Educational Partnership to Internationalize the Curriculum).

Curriculum Vitae-Academic Resumé

Personal Quote:
"Alfred North Whitehead listed adventure as one of five necessities to the truly civilized community, next after truth and beauty, ahead of art and peace. It is a startling idea and he meant it to be so. Men and women are both taught to recognize adventure only as a passing fancy in the growing child, to be put aside with adolescence at the latest. The mature individual settles down; that is to say he does without adventure. Then he should do without beauty, and faith, and laughter, for these too are incidental to real life, to eating and begetting and keeping out of rain.

....Adventure is as needful to the real life of the spirit as food is to the body. The inadvisability of an action will not curtail it if it fills that need. Gambling is more or less bad for society, but people will play the tables so long as hope of sudden wealth connotes hope of change, variety. That is why it appeals broadly to the poor more than the rich: their lives are drearier. Workers go on strike not only for wages and decent hours but out of sheer dramatic hunger. A love affair imparts adventure, not merely because it is unsanctioned and a little risky, but because it proceeds on part-knowledge, like all creative endeavor. A general goes into battle; an artist paints; men climb Everest and fling themselves into the sky; become healers and judge a crime on part-knowledge. They have to, for that is the condition of living" --Michael Drury

Last update: 2016-06-12
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