Professor Patricia A. Cockram passed away on June 13. Dr. Cockram joined the Department of English in 2000 after receiving her Ph.D. from the CUNY Graduate Center in 1999. During her ten years at Lehman, she received several research awards and fellowships and had a memorable impact on the Department, serving as the Director of the Graduate Program and on various committees. A highly respected Ezra Pound scholar, she published widely and continued her research and writing even as she battled cancer.
Dr. Cockram was not only a true scholar but also a warm and generous leader in the classroom, who was admired by her students as well as her colleagues. Through the years, she was praised as a talented teacher with a calm sense of mastery. Students thought similarly of her, saying she was professional, open-minded, charismatic, and attentive, while ultimately providing a wealth of knowledge.
Dr. Cockram once wrote, "I am convinced that the pedagogical method one employs is less important than the rapport one develops with the students and the enthusiasm for the material one feels and communicates." Her legacy in the classroom certainly encompasses all of these things, and as a teacher, colleague, and friend, she will be most sorely missed.
Prior to entering academia, Dr. Cockram had a distinguished career in fashion, working as an executive at Perry Ellis, Liz Claiborne, Saks, Macy's, and Barneys. Fluent in Italian and French, she traveled widely in Europe and was an avid lover of the arts. She is survived by her mother, five siblings, and a large extended family.
Memorial donations may be made to the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center's Patient Assistance Fund at www.mskcc.org