Professional Spotlight: Dr. Tracey Quigley Holden

The first time I stepped my foot into the classroom for my Public Speaking class with Dr. Tracey Quigley Holden, I felt swallowed by nerves. The words “Public speaking” alone made me cringe. The music video for “Happy” by Pharrell was showing on the projector screen. I said hello to some of the fellow freshmen that I knew as Dr. Holden stood confidently by the desk, silently smiling as they piled in.


During our interview, Dr. Holden remarked (with a slight Texas accent), “Y’all are way more informed than I ever was,” regarding the Communication Interest freshmen she teaches. Well, I believe this to be true because of the stellar staff of the University of Delaware’s Department of Communication. Each of the professors I have heard speak or had myself have their own creative way to educate students. Dr. Holden’s aura and teaching style seemed to match well with the way I learn and see the world. The content in her Public Speaking class consists of different parts of rhetoric that must be connected so we are able to learn about the aspects of language and speak to an audience fluently. Dr. Holden graduated from Texas A&M with, as she calls it, an “accidental degree” in Communications. Originally enrolled as a Pre-Veterinarian major, she eventually switched to Marketing, but did not enjoy either. A professor at the university noticed that Dr. Holden kept enrolling Communication courses and excelling. After eyeing her success in the classes, the professor persuaded her to pursue Communications.

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From there, her passion flourished and she eventually graduated with a degree in the field. She truly enjoys what she teaches. While talking about why she likes to teach Communication courses, she noted, “People learn best when they care about material and they are learning it from people who care about them.” She conveys her passion for the subject and for her students during every class: always offering resources and aid for students. Dr. Holden loves language and is undoubtedly a people-person. She always adds humor to the traditional classroom setting: making her classes not only meaningful, but enjoyable.

Dr. Holden’s current favorite quote is “Trust in the abundance of the universe,” and she notes that “It is the idea that there is enough in the universe for everyone and when you put your trust in, it is going to be okay, it is going to work out. It will come around to being good.” I find it is hard to capture the essence of this lovely woman in just a few paragraphs, so I encourage fellow UD students to enroll in a course with Dr. Holden!

Contribution By: Avery Beer

Avery Beer is an enthusiastic freshman Communication Interest major at the University of Delaware with passions for writing, story-telling, and all things food-related. Avery is an active member of PRSSA-UD and the UD Yoga Club. When she is not taking selfies with her cats, she is probably getting iced coffee or writing for her blog:


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