Negotiating the Religious Heritage of Saint Rose

March 16, 2010– This months Provisions Happy Hour presented a sensitive topic on campus here at Saint Rose. The topic was negotiating the religious heritage of Saint Rose and the presenters included Scott Brodie from the Art Department, Chris DeGiovine from Spiritual Life, and Mark Ledbetter from the Philosophy and Religion Department.

Scott Brodie began the conversation by sharing with the group his relationship with Father Chris. Coming from two different religious backgrounds, Brodie and Father Chris formed a friendship and bond based on neutral understanding, curiosity, and interest in the difference between them. It was truly inspiring to hear that two individuals, with completely differenet belief systems, can find common ground and form a friendship. As Brodie mentioned, “deeply held, sharply different beliefs keep life interesting.” The overall theme of Brodies presentation was to be who you are, but learn about those who are different and don’t be persuaded by community pressure to hide your practices.

Father Chris spoke next about the important difference between Catholic Intellectual Tradition (CIT) and the Roman Catholic Church (RCC). With the RCC becoming an old dying institute, CIT is all about free inquiry and truth. Father Chris spoke about the importance in distinguishing between the two  because Saint Rose is based on CIT more so then RCC. Below you will find the handout in which Father Chris presented to accompany his presentation.

Finally, Mark Ledbetter from the Philosophy and Religion Department talked about a course he taught called Religion and Culture. In the course eight students were engaged in an intense discussion on all topics surrounding religion. The goal of this course was to interrogate religion, and Ledbetter spoke highly of its success. The overall theme of Ledbetter’s presentation was that students do not distinguish between religion and spirituality and the importance to recognize that the ability to move among religions is part of their religious identity.

At the conclusion of the presentations the open discussion faced many of the challenging topics Saint Rose faces. Topics discussed include the role and inequality of women in the Catholice Church and why there weren’t any women speakers on the panel, the difference between a Catholic College and a Catholic Church, and the need for a post-religious world. The idea of a post-religious world is not the same as a non-religion world, it is the need for no dominant religion and greater understanding of all religions. This idea helped shaped the conversation and brought the session to a close.

To hear all three presenters from last nights session, check out the Provisions Podcast.

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Religious Revival

March 11, 2010– Provisions Happy Hour will explore the Religious Heritage of Saint Rose at next weeks session. As part of this months theme, an article from December 2009, Inside Higher Ed, entitled “Religious Revival” talks about religion being the most popular field of study among historians, according to a new study from the members of the American Historical Association. This increase, according to Jon Butler, a professor in religious and American studies from Yale, is due to the realization that the world “is aflame with faith.”

In The News

Below you will find articles from online resources pertaining to teaching

Inside Higher Ed:

The Uninsured Adjunct  With health care continuing to be debated nationally, many adjuncts are trying to draw attention to their status among the well-educated professionals who sometimes received little to no coverage. (Nov. 30, 2009)

Shift in Researcher Population  According to a new report from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization the share of the worldwide research population in the United States has decreased from 23.2 to 20.3 percent between 2002 and 2007. This article explores the reasons for the decline. (Nov. 25, 2009)

Be a Tech-Aware Adjunct It is important, as an adjunct, to demonstrate proficiency in “new” technology because,”you are already two steps out the door with a long line of newly minted graduates waiting just outside.” This article explores ways in which new media can be integrated into the classroom, as well as whether or not technology is good pedagogy. (Nov. 18, 2009)

Boost for Liberal Arts Technology? With the help of the National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education (NITLE) Liberal Arts colleges will be brought up to speed on advanced networking. The NITLE announced a partnership with network provider Internet2 in hopes to allow liberal arts colleges to expand cirriculur offerings, attract top faculty, and provide remote access to digital collections. (Nov. 17,2009)

The New Literacy and the CMS The ability to write for a web audience is argued in this article as the new literacy. This article explores the ways in which new media and social learning are opportunties for students rather then obstacles. (Oct. 13, 2009)

E-Books and Colleges Will electronic and digiatal books replace printed books? This article explores ways to avoid repeating the “Napster” experience on campus’ with e-books. (Oct. 4,2009)

Define “College Ready’ Nationally The amount of students out of high school who are ill-prepared for college or the work force is not very disputed. This article focus’ on how to fix this problem. The idea of a nationally embraced code of standards for high school students, is currently being reviewed by college faculty with one goal in mind, allow students to get to the next step. (Sept. 21, 2009)

Can We Discuss This? The article navigates through what discussion groups should not be, as well as good practices of discussion groups. Suggestions provided in order to conduct an effective group include maximizing student involvement and creating a separate syllabus for discussion. (Sept. 9, 2009)

Managing The Admissions Challenge With 90% of colleges reporting an increase in financial aid applications this year, and 74% of colleges reporting an increase in number of students offered grant aid, this article offers strategies used by colleges in 2009 or planned for 2010. Such strategies include admitting more applicants, awarding larger grants, and offering grants to more students. (Sept. 25, 2009)

New York Times:

Students Protest Tuition Increases Protests continue on several campuses after the University of California Board of Regents announced a 32% increase in fees equivalent to tuition. (Nov. 20,2009)

Barred From Field, Religious Signs Move to Stands After a parent expressed concern over banners at a high school football game in Fort Oglethorpe, Ga. which read, “Commit to the Lord,” a first amendment lawsuit may be underway. Due to the new policy, the article explores the unexpected results  that came from this incident. (Oct. 26,2009)

M.I.T Taking Student Blogs to Nth Degree Many colleges are beginning to embrace student blogs on their websites, seeing them as a marketing tool for high school students. This article talks about the pros and cons to publishing untouched student writing. (Oct. 1,2009)

The College Calculation “How much does a college education, the actual teaching and learning that happens on campus, really matter?” (Sept. 24, 2009)     

College Officials Brace for Hit from Economy This article explores the shift from “will my child get into college?” to ” can we afford to send my child to college?” (Sept. 25,2009)


Additional Websites & Blogs:

Academic Commons 

American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education

The Chronicle of Higher Education