Michel has been at the University of Puget Sound since the seventies when he chaired the Department of Foreign Languages & Literature for 20 years. In the fall of 2014, he will be the first chair of the newly created French Studies Department.
His Phd in 1980 is in Comparative Literature, and he has published on the theater, particularly the playwrights Luigi Pirandello, Harold Pinter, Jean Anouilh, and the poet Charles Baudelaire. His book on the French dramatist Jean Anouilh was published in 2006. Michel has particular interest in Modern French feminist writers, Francophone women writers, and he teaches courses in French literature of the XIX, XX, and XXI centuries, and Literary theory. Michel has implemented many academic initiatives; one of his proudest achievements is the Dijon, France study-abroad semester inaugurated in 1985.
Michel has also been active in the community: He has chaired the Board of the Tacoma Grand Cinema, and he is currently Board President of Shared Housing Services.
The University has honored Michel by naming a wing in the new residence hall. The Michel Rocchi International District in Commencement Hall will highlight Michel’s passion for co-curricular activities by providing a living-learning environment that complement the student classroom experience. The faculty also honored Michel in 2012 with the Walter Lowrie Sustained Service Award bestowed by the Faculty Senate.
Michel enjoys his career at Puget Sound, and loves his students that he endearingly calls “Les Misérables”.
BA, MA, University of Puget Sound, 1971, 1972
PhD, University of Washington, 1980