Many students and alums attended one of the many Centennial College Sessions on Saturday morning across campus from 10 to 11:30 a.m. The sessions included:
Why Women Matter: The Role of Women in Economic Development
Associate Professor of Economics Jo Beth Mertens
Stern Hall 303
Does it matter when leadership positions are held by women? In this class, we will look at recent research on the important role women play in leadership positions in both the public and private sectors. We will discuss why diversity matters and look at recent research on effective philanthropy.
Keeping Things Whole: A Look at Composition in Dance and the Visual Arts
Associate Dean of Faculty and Professor of Dance Donna Davenport and Associate Professor of Art Nick Ruth
In this session, Davenport and Ruth will lead participants through a hands on look into composition in the arts. While it is certainly engaging to talk about principles of design in the abstract, the real fun happens when ideas and feelings become motion and marks.
Two Cities: New York and Toronto
Professor of Sociology Jim Spates P’00, P’11 and Professor of Economics Pat McGuire
Two cities. Two cultures. Two countries. Two disciplines. For nearly a quarter century, we have been offering this course. Its purpose, using two analytical perspectives-economics (Professor McGuire) and sociology (Professor Spates)-being to show our students just how different two cities-which, on the surface, look very similar-can be. At the heart of the course, after weeks spent in preparation for each, are mid-semester field trips to each city (6 days in NYC and 5 days in Toronto). In each city we try to give our students every experience possible-getting them access to the things they should see and the people they should meet (former mayors, for example) but also to the things most visitors never see and the people most visitors never meet (the homeless in both cities, for example). Ours is, in other words, very much an “on the street” approach. By the time the course is over, our students have learned that these great cities are not only run very differently because of the cultural settings in which they exist (and have learned as well-and hardly incidentally!-that Canada in not just “American North”), but that cities are not abstract entities but living realities created and changed by real people-people, in other words, like themselves. If you join us, we will share some of our theories about these cities and some of the truly memorable stories that our two and a half decades of teaching “Two Cities” have generated.
What is Leadership?
Professor of Sociology Jack Harris and Salisbury Center for Career Services Director Bob Murphy
What is leadership? How do we know it when we experience it in others, and how do we ourselves know how to lead? There is leadership potential in each one of us and you do not have to be at the very front of the line! This session explores what we know about leadership and explores your own leadership capabilities. We will learn how the WIlliam Smith Centennial has become the occasion to launch a campus and community leadership program that is distinctive in its grasp of the leadership challenge, integrates student experiences across curricular and co-curricular activities including service and research opportunities, and global education, and is based on a carefully constructed developmental model.
Leading Women – Wonder Woman, Buffy the Vampire Slayer … and You
Associate Professor of Women’s Studies Betty Bayer and Fisher Center Predoctoral Fellow Jillian Burcar
The Fisher Center, Demerast Hall
How would Xena the Warrior Princess cut through the illusion of a choice between home and career? What kind of housewife would Catwoman have made? What does Buffy the Vampire Slayer have to offer as a presidential candidate? Wonder Woman to William Smith Alumnae? This workshop explores modern myths of women’s special powers and of powerful women, asking how these myths call women to fashion who they are and what powers they have to unleash on the world. “But with great power comes great responsibility,” asking us to go beyond standard depictions of power. Why is a powerful woman talked about in the singular rather than plural sense? Why is power translated into “having it all?” What might we tap into to recreate or reimagine women’s power and the power of women? Participants will be asked to create and to be critical of icons of leading women – super heroines, evil temptresses, madonnas, badass chicks, femme fatales, bitches, nerds, sluts – to imagine women’s powers for our age.
Race, Class, Gender and the Foundations of Leadership
Assistant Professor of Psychology Jon Iuzzini and William Smith Interim Dean Cerri Banks
This mini-course will examine the ways in which the intersections of race, class, and gender inform our understanding of leadership. We will discuss the processes connected with identifying and choosing our leaders as well as the importance of these ideas in being a leader. Finally, we will focus on the way in which this examination expands traditional models of leadership.
William Smith Alumnae and Science
Associate Professor of Chemistry Christine De Denus and Associate Professor of Sociology Renee Monson
Have you ever wondered what William Smith women who majored in science did with their degrees after graduation? Last year, a group of women from the Centennial Programming Committee sent a questionnaire to all women who majored in the sciences at William Smith College between 1934 and 2007. We asked science alumnae to share their career paths since graduation, including career milestones and significant personal and professional accomplishments. We also asked about their experiences and education at William Smith College and the influences on their life paths. Our panel encourages everyone to join us to hear the results of this survey. The results are truly amazing!