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Philosophy Professor Diego Lucci: “Teaching at AUBG makes me feel that I am doing something significant”

Traveling around the world, solving the mysteries of the early modern era, publishing highly respected books—all while being one of AUBG’s most beloved professors, a devoted husband, and (since recently) a father—Professor Diego Lucci is living, breathing proof of the maxims “Hard work always pays off” and “In order to succeed, you should do what you love.”

Growing up in Naples, Italy, Professor Lucci always dreamt of going beyond the materialistic realm and diving deep into the metaphysical dimensions of philosophy and ethics. Even as a boy, he was insatiably curious, which more often than not got him into trouble for “asking too many questions.” Unlike many of his friends, Lucci was never interested in pursuing a career in law or economics. For him, it was not the profitability of his career that mattered, but the satisfaction he would get out of it.

Now, many years and numerous achievements later, Lucci does not regret pursuing his true passion. His exciting academic journey started at the University of Naples “Federico II,” where he obtained his PhD in Philosophy, after which he held fellowships and professorships at numerous institutions, including Boston University, the University of Missouri St. Louis, the Fulbright International Summer Institute, the Catholic University of Milan, and the Institute of Historical Research in London. Besides his impressive teaching background, Professor Lucci admits to being “a heavy conference goer,” which has led him to places like the US, England, Iceland, Austria, and the Netherlands. He has also been invited to lecture on his research at many prestigious universities, including the College of William and Mary, Boston College, Ruhr University in Bochum, and Queen’s University Belfast.

However, Professor Lucci’s adventures go beyond university campuses. Over the last five summers, he has taught at a most unconventional venue–a cross-oceanic cruise. While travelling overseas on luxurious ships, he taught groups of history and culture enthusiasts about the unique features of the countries they were laying aboard in.

“It was a great experience. The different settings of the lectures were enjoyable in the sense that everybody who was attending was there on their own will,” explains Lucci.

At AUBG, Professor Lucci teaches courses in Philosophy and History that are well attended and highly praised by students. “AUBGers have a very good background in the humanities. I am always impressed by how willing they are to participate in the class activities,” Professor Lucci shares about his students. When asked about Diego Lucci as instructor, one of his students shares: “He has a unique teaching style. Being in his class is like being in an entirely different world, where working hard indeed pays off and where student-teacher dialogue is stimulated and encouraged. Thanks to him, I discovered my true passion—philosophy—and I improved significantly my writing and critical thinking. His impeccable professionalism, devotion to his work, and willingness to help make him one of the most amazing professors and mentors I have ever had in my life.”

When asked why he is so actively involved in and devoted to his job at AUBG, Lucci explains, “Teaching at AUBG makes me feel that I am doing something significant. Educating the future leaders of the region is definitely an incentive that deserves devotion and hard-work. However, my work here is not only about ‘giving.’ AUBG has also helped me to improve my cross-cultural competence and teaching techniques when dealing with students from different backgrounds and origins and to access a wide network of scholars worldwide. It also taught me leadership, organizational, and administrative skills.”  

Publishing a new book and continuing his research on modern philosophy, with special focus on Enlightenment England, and on the history of Jewish-Gentile relations are only part of this ambitious scholar’s plans. So far, he has published more than 30 book chapters and journal articles, 40 book reviews, as well as 2 books related to deism and the Jewish emancipation debate in the Age of Enlightenment. He is also the co-editor of three volumes, including a recently published collection of essays on atheism and deism in early modern Britain. And if you think that Professor Lucci does not have hobbies to go with his busy lifestyle – you could not be more wrong. Even though he does not have much time, he is a big rugby fan. Especially when in England, he does not miss the opportunity to go and watch a game at the stadium, which brings him true pleasure and enjoyment.

In the eleventh hour, finding the balance between a successful professional and personal life requires brilliant time management, devotion and perseverance – all qualities that Diego Lucci has proven to possess throughout the years. A great teacher, an inspiring mentor and a true friend is what makes his presence an invaluable asset to AUBG. So, next time you meet Professor Lucci, do not be afraid to approach him – he would definitely have something interesting to say that might change your life.

Story by Nelly Ovcharova

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