An organized mess of papers fills the entire office of one of the longest-tenured professors at Virginia Wesleyan. Papers on top of papers filled with information almost touched the ceiling. Dr. Robert B. Albertson has been passing his mnemonics and other teaching techniques for nearly four decades at Virginia Wesleyan. He is more formally known to his students as “Dr. Bob”. The professor of business, management, and economics has served many different roles at Virginia Wesleyan. His roles include three years as the coordinator of the Department of Management, Business and Economics, nearly a decade as Chair of the Division of Social Sciences and another three years as Associate Dean of the University. Prior to his time at Virginia Wesleyan, he served in the US Army and is a Vietnam War veteran.
Dr. Albertson is a graduate of Old Dominion University, where he was inducted into many different honor societies on campus, including Sigma Beta Delta, Pi Alpha Alpha, Phi Alpha Theta, and Phi Kappa Phi. He earned his bachelor’s degree in history with a specialty in Russian studies, which later assisted him in earning his master’s degree in business administration. Albertson later graduated with his doctorate in urban studies.
After he received his M.B.A, he began his teaching career at Tidewater Community College. As he has spent decades at Virginia Wesleyan, there is a very important reason that he is still here. “I love the opportunities to work closely with students,” Albertson said. There are many benefits in going to a small school. One of those benefits is smaller class sizes. That is one thing that keeps Dr. Albertson going. “This place has been a remarkable place that fits well with my interest in face-to-face contact in small classes,” Albertson said. With many other impacts that he has had at VWU, he taught the first course beyond accounting I and II, which was cost accounting back in the early 1980s. In talking about how he developed different mnemonics to help students in his classes, Albertson said, “I have been able to help others in ways that I wished I had been helped.”
During his time at Virginia Wesleyan, Albertson succeeded in taking administrative roles. ” I have been able to exercise one of my other loves, which is administration….I really enjoyed the administrative work because I could help along things. So, each year i tried to do some things, not just handle paperwork. Although, it looks like all of it has stayed here.”
Many changes have occurred in just the past few years at Virginia Wesleyan from new buildings, new teachers and even the change from college to a university. There are many changes that stand out to him, like the length of the school year and the change in faculty interactions. ” We use to have one place to pick up the mail. I would see Lambuth Clarke,” Albertson said. These meetings were some of the great moments that he had at this school. “I miss when we used to get together have lunch or dinner,”Albertson said.
When it comes to the many changes that Virginia Wesleyan has seen over the years, the addition of graduate programs has been a major change for Albertson. Through 40 years of teaching, he has taught numerous students the techniques of business and accounting. The most memorable moments that he can recall was watching his students’ accomplishments and seeing the positive impact that he has had on his students.
Albertson was also involved in the foundation of the Adult Studies Program, and is the last of the founders still teaching on campus.
Albertson now teaches upper level business courses that are mainly financial management, field experience, and internship seminars.