Breakout Session 1
Breakout Session 2
Breakout Session 3
with Dr. David W. Concepción
How do we know what the right thing to do is? Is it better to maximize happiness for a lot of people even if it means cheating or stealing? How do you become a good person? Is morality relative or objective or something else entirely?
In this session, you will explore these and other questions, examining the branch of philosophy called Ethics.
Dr. David W. Concepción
with Griffin Green
Do you have free will or is everything determined? What is consciousness? Who even am I?
In this session, you will learn about metaphysics, the study of being.
with Dr. Sarah Vitale and Rachel Johnson
What do your life experience and identity have to do with knowledge? What does it mean to be a good knower?
In this session, you will learn about epistemology, the branch of philosophy that considers what knowledge is. Epistemology comes from two Greek words: episteme, which means knowledge, and logos, which means reason or study.
Dr. Sarah Vitale and Rachel Johnson
with Ariel Blunk
What does it mean to be human? If I didn’t ask to be born, what responsibility do I have with my life? Is there anything I am meant to do?
In this session, you will learn about Existentialism, which focuses on what our emotions, such as anxiety or dread, tell us about our lives or what it means to be human. We will also consider what it means to be free and what it means to live an authentic life.
HONORS 202: "What’s Love Got to Do With It?”
with Dr. Beth Dalton
Visit a class in the Honors College!
The course spans approximately 500 CE to 1800, considering the Enduring Questions humans have often discussed, such as: what is the role of the individual in society; what is just and fair in any given circumstance; what is the individual’s duty to his or her community, his or her god(s), him or herself; when is war justified; what does it mean to be human. On April 21, you can eavesdrop on small groups of students as they complete their creative collaborative projects which are to be submitted and presented the following week.
Dr. Beth Dalton
HONORS 390: "Making Marks"
with Dr. Craig Farnsworth and Dr. Timothy Berg
Visit a class in the Honors College!
People have been creating things since the dawn of humankind, starting with prehistoric cave paintings made over 40,000 years ago. The drive to create, or to “make marks,” has been evident across cultures the world over. This course is investigating mark-making in many of its forms, from the intentional “work of art” to the small, seemingly-inconsequential actions that create or improve our surroundings, seeking to see how those marks can help support a life well lived. On April 21, students will be presenting and discussing the results of their personal mark-making projects, fusing ideas and experiences from the course with their own strategies for making meaning by making marks. You will be welcome to join the conversation!
Dr. Craig Farnsworth and Dr. Timothy Berg
What is Religion?
with Dr. Matthew Hotham
If someone asked you to define religion, you might start by listing examples of major world religions. Or, you might describe central elements of your own religious tradition. But, what if you encountered a community, practice, object, or text “in the wild” and had to determine whether it was religious or not? How would you do so? In this session we will try to answer the question “what is religion, anyway?” through examining popular definitions of religion and applying them to complex and borderline cases like the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. We may not come to a firm definition by the end of the session, but we will gain some insight into how others have tried to answer this question and learn to identify what makes some definitions more useful than others.
Dr. Matthew Hotham
The Philosopher's Toolbox
with Abby Eads, Parker Gray, Austin Lewis, and Madison Miller
When philosophers need to try out a theory, many will turn to the thought experiment. From Mary the scientist to trolly problems, a philosopher will use these tools to help explain their point of view or to challenge others. Join us for a quick round of philosophical thinking with everyday thought experiments that will puzzle the mind and get you thinking!
Abby Eads, Parker Gray, Austin Lewis, and Madison Miller
How to Live the (a?) Good Life
with Dr. Sarah Vitale, Carter Hollems, Grant Ryan, Emma Hamilton, and Rachel Johnson
Philosophy might seem to be a lot of sitting around and thinking, often about deep, intangible things. But philosophers have also thought about how to live the good life. But they typically don’t mean a life of material possessions and not a care in the world.
In this session, we will look at the views of what the good life is and how to live it from several philosophers. We will evaluate their claims and see if we agree or if we can come to a consensus of what the (or a) good life is.
Dr. Sarah Vitale, Carter Hollems, Grant Ryan, Emma Hamilton, and Rachel Johnson
The Intersection of Art and Philosophy: A Conversation About Aesthetics at DOMA
with Griffin Green and Cierra Tindall
Griffin Green and Cierra Tindall
Can We Beat the Heat? Individual and Collective Action Against Climate Change
with Emma Hamilton, Rachel Johnson, and Dr. David W. Concepción
It’s no secret that climate change has been a hot topic in the realm of political and social activism. We know the earth is getting warmer, but how much warmer? How fast? How much time do we have? What will this look like moving forward? What can we do about it?
These questions and more will be explored in this session as we brainstorm solutions to the climate crisis — solutions that dive deeper than simply investing in reusable straws. This session will provide you with a better understanding of your own impact on climate change, as well as the larger-scale impact of nations, industries, and corporations.
Emma Hamilton, Rachel Johnson, and Dr. David W. Concepción
Critical Conversations about CRT
with Abby Eads, Stephanie Ochoa, and Cierra Tindall
From the news, to the dinner table, to the classroom, one might say that Critical Race Theory, or CRT, is a hot topic. Why is everyone talking about Critical Race Theory? What is CRT? What is its place in K-12 education? Critical Race Theory intersects a number of fundamental matters, like education, history, and race, so it can seem like quite the puzzle. We will dive straight into these gripping questions and assemble the CRT puzzle as philosophers. On a topic concerning students, we will clear a space to hear straight from high school philosophers themselves and work together to respond to the dilemma of Critical Race Theory in K-12 education.
Abby Eads, Stephanie Ochoa, and Cierra Tindall
Meeting the Basic Needs of Americans: The Problem of Homelessness
with Grace Georgi, Carter Hollems, and Grant Ryan
Grace Georgi, Carter Hollems, and Grant Ryan
Education and the Free Market
with Madison Miller and Emily Voelker
Madison Miller and Emily Voelker
The Human Cost of War: The Refugee Crisis
with Parker Gray and Austin Lewis
With over 84 million current refugees around the globe and more resulting from the war in Ukraine, countries are met with how to respond to these individuals and their families in crisis. How does someone become a refugee? Where are they going to be resettled? How do we help those individuals escape the circumstances that they are currently in? We will discuss these and other complexities and questions surrounding the refugee crises, then we will work to form a response to the issues that we identify, utilizing the core philosophical principles learned in the earlier sessions.
Parker Gray and Austin Lewis
The US Prison System: Examining Injustice Inside the Justice System
with Ariel Blunk and Isabel Lozano
With over 2 million people in Prison in the United States, we must ask ourselves why the population is so high and how it got that way. Why does the United States have 20% of the world’s prisoners but only 5% of the world’s population? What is the purpose of the US Prison System? There are several issues plaguing the prison system in the United States, including overcrowding, access to adequate mental healthcare, sexual assault, and more. An additional concern is the rate of recidivism, or the rate at which people return to prison. Philosophers for generations haver been examining the purpose and efficacy of incarceration. What does incarceration have to do with race, class, and gender? Does access to education affect rates of incarceration? Join our session to examine the US prison system using the philosophical education you received in the morning sessions.
Ariel Blunk and Isabel Lozano