Dr. Michael Soupios is an institution within himself at LIU-Post. Ask any student on campus about his classes and nine times out of ten the feedback will be great. With four doctorates and four masters degrees, Dr. Soupios considers himself to be very lucky in his career here at Post, since this is the only full-time job he’s ever had. We sat in his office in Hoxie Hall, which is filled with ancient Greek art and pictures of his family, for an interview.
When he started here in 1977, he was an administrator as that was the only position available. By 1988, he was teaching full-time, although he only taught night classes since the beginning. Currently, Dr. Soupios teaches Political Science 1 and 2, various political science honors courses, and is a graduate advisor. He enjoys teaching the introduction classes because it’s mostly comprised of freshmen and sophomores who have no experience with the topic. “I like to think they start to listen, to think, and to understand political philosophy,” he said.
What has kept Soupios here so long are his good Long Island roots. He and his family moved to the Island from the city when he was a child. He has raised his family here and now one of his children is starting their family here as he has a four-year-old granddaughter. “Those are the titles that count; Prof, dada, and grandpa,” he said. Although he has been offered a number of other jobs and been nominated for other administration positions, he turned them all down, without question, having no interest in any of them.
However, at this point in his career, he does not think that Post has changed for the better over the past 30 years. “Unfortunately the campus has gotten bureaucratized,” said Soupios. He feels that there is now too much administration which has led to a lack of quality relationships. “People are unwilling to extend themselves that little bit extra, they hid behind the rules,” he said. Soupios has seen the campus become “rigid and juridical.” He said this is a negative trend to move towards because it has led to “armed union camps” and it wasn’t like that years ago.
As much as he is bothered by some of the administrative decisions that have been made over the past 30 years, he has had a plethora of good memories too. His best Post memory is receiving the Chancellors Award a couple of years ago. He was given a medallion and all of his students, colleagues, and his wife were there. Soupios even got a surprise visit from an old friend who didn’t tell him that he was going to be there.
I read two entries I found on www.ratemyprofessor.com to Dr. Soupios to see what he thought; he has never actually been on the site.
“This man is a legend. Take his class, feel the wonder that is Soupios. Your life will be better for it.”
“Dr. Soupios is the most engrossing professor I’ve encountered at Post. He’s eloquent and understanding. Hilariously candid too. Couldn’t recommend him more.”
His face lit up as a huge grin appeared across his face. “It makes you feel very good. As a professor that’s what you want to hear,” he said, laughing to himself. Students that write on www.ratemyprofessor.com aren’t the only ones with good things to say about this “legend.”
Senior Broadcasting major, Matt Soldano, said, “I’m a big fan of his. He made someone with no interest in political science, interested.” Followed by sophomore Journalism major, David Otero, who said, “He made the topic a lot more interesting than any other professor could. He made you want to come to class.”
As I am also a former student of his, it was nice to hear that Dr. Soupios has no immediate plan to retire. “Man proposes but God disposes,” he said, meaning that he would like to continue working as long as the big guy upstairs will allow it. He’d like to put in a total of 50 years.
So for anyone who has not taken Political Science 1 and 2 yet, Dr. Soupios plans on sticking around to teach it for a little while longer; and as you can see he comes highly recommended.