I've been reading Chaucer again, with my old book, and got to thinking about the regional university where I first took English classes. I was able to take at least 3 medieval lit classes there, a Canterbury Tales class, a Troilus and Criseyde class, and a Medieval Drama class. There were three medievalists teaching four classes a semester. Yes, each taught the basic medieval survey classe, but I didn't take that there. (I did sit in on a survey class as a PhD student, just for the background.)
Wow. We try to teach a Chaucer or medieval class every other year here. There's no real medievalist.
I think this is mostly a numbers thing. My RU was three times the size of NWU, and so could offer a wider array of all sorts of programs. And the lit staff didn't teach comp (there was a separate comp staff and program), so they taught more lit than we do here. (And 4/4 is hell, of course!)
What an opportunity they gave me there. Really. If I die and end up leaving money, I'm leaving a chunk to that school because it really does provide amazing opportunities despite tremendous budget difficulties.
The faculty at RU was encouraging, and good teachers. Some of them had written some fine books, too. When I look back, I have great affection for RU and gratitude for the opportunities they gave me to study and learn, and for the encouragement.