Milan Kovacovic, D.Arts

Milan Kovacovic

Professional title

Associate Professor of French Studies


Doctorate of Arts in French Studies - Claremont Graduate University
Maîtrise - Université de Nice, France
B.A. and M.A. - California State University East Bay

Professor Kovacovic is a dual citizen of France and the United States and a veteran of the U.S. Army who grew up in rural Normandy attending from age five to ten  a one-room schoolhouse directed by a great teacher, Madame Mercier. He then received his secondary education in Paris and Chicago, and undertook most of his university studies in California, where he was employed for thirteen years by Trans World Airlines as a passenger service agent at the San Francisco International airport during the heady pre-security days of air travel.

As a proponent of Claremont Graduate University’s signature transdisciplinary perspective on college education, Milan considers that teaching and advising are the most important and rewarding aspects of his career, in addition to creative writing in both French and English. His memoir, Ma’s Dictionary: Straddling the Social Class Divide, was a Publishers Weekly staff pick for “Best Read of the Year” in 2011, and selected  by the Library of Congress for its permanent collection. The Friends of Milan Kovacovic study-abroad scholarship was established in his honor by former students in 2010.  Most recently he was named the Minnesota French Teacher of the Year by the MN chapter of the American Association of Teachers of French.

Courses taught

FR 1101/1102 – Beginning French
FR 1201/1202 – Intermediate French
FR 2301 – Advanced French
FR 2315 – Images of Human Diversity in French Cinema
Fr 3905 – Autobiography in French Literature and Cinema
Fr 4412 -- Contemporary French Culture and Society
FR 4472 – Classical French Literature

Also several special topics or single author courses (e.g. Montaigne; Proust; Chanson à texte; etc.).

Planned: “School Daze,” a course featuring French films and writings about education.



Milan Kovacovic. Ma's Dictionary: Straddling the Social Class Divide. Illustrated, 338 pp. Greysolon Press, 2011. Synopsis: Greysolon


Selected Recognitions

  • Minnesota French Teacher of the Year award from the MN chapter of the American Association of Teachers of French (2017)
  • UMD Student Awards: Nominated for Outstanding Advisor Award (2015)
  • UMD Student Awards: Outstanding Faculty Award (2013)
  • CLA Teaching Award (2000)
  • Minnesota State Arts Board Writing Awards (1986, l988, 1993)
  • McKnight/Arrowhead Regional Arts Council Writing Awards (1992, 2002)
  • Book contract for Logé Nourri, Récit. Editions Seghers, Paris, France (1990)
  • Lake Superior Contemporary Writers Award (1987)

See Milan's profile on The Human Fabric of Duluth