I have helped motivate, support, and challenge others for the better part of four decades in the classroom and through the written word. I am a problem-solver—my philosophy is that we can tackle just about anything as long as we have the right tools, which include education and hope. I do my best to supply those.
At Drake University, I was the E.T. Meredith Distinguished Professor of Journalism, the director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communications, and architect of the university’s magazine journalism program. I am the author of Surviving Triple-Negative Breast Cancer and co-author of The Magazine from Cover to Cover.
I try to help people make sense of things, to encourage them on whatever journey they embark on, and to be a friend. My last name, by the way, is the Slovenian word for friend.
I like spinning tales so much that when I retired from teaching at Drake University, they created the Patricia Prijatel Storyteller Award for students who create “journalism that informs and inspires.”
The mountain pictured above is my healer, the East Spanish Peak in Southern Colorado. My family has a sweet little homemade cabin at its base. In 2013, this scene was ground zero for the East Peak Fire. Check out my blog for more photos of the mountain and the after-effects of the fire. Check out the memoir I am writing about the experience, tying it into the climate crisis and climate anxiety. Through replanting, erosion control, and clean-up, I am now trying to heal my healer, but I have been surprised at how much healing I have had to do. The toll on my body, mind, and spirit has been significant. I’m terrified that this could all happen again. And it could. Actually, it probably will.