Hobart and William Smith Colleges welcome author Eric Liu
GQ thinks he's cool. Slate and MSNBC publish his commentary. And he really cares what young Americans have to say. The embodiment of these unique attributes is author and educator Eric Liu, who gave the last President's Forum Lecture of the season, titled “What Diversity Can—and Can't—Teach Us?” on April 27.
Liu is author of “The Accidental Asian: Notes of a Native Speaker,” which discusses what it is to be an American, and the editor of “Next: Young American Writers on the New Generation,” featuring political and cultural commentary by writers in their 20s.
The former Clinton-era foreign policy speechwriter and deputy domestic policy adviser is just as dedicated to mentoring as he is to politics. As founder of the Guiding Lights Project, a mentoring outreach program that showcases the strategies and stories of great mentors, Liu also wrote “Guiding Lights: The People Who Lead Us Toward Our Purpose in Life,” which examines life-changing teachers and mentors.
Liu, who graduated from Yale College and Harvard Law School, currently hosts a local NPR interview show called “The Power of Voice” and teaches at the University of Washington's Evans School of Public Affairs.
The President's Forum Series, established in the winter of 2000, is designed to bring a variety of speakers to campus to share their knowledge and ideas with students, faculty and staff of the Colleges, as well as interested community members.
This event was held in conjunction with the President's Diversity Forum, to celebrate and encourage differences/diversity in the Colleges curriculum and programs abroad. Other President's Diversity Forum events included the following:
• A faculty and staff workshop titled “Developing a Multicultural Imperative for a Future-Oriented Education” with Carlos Cortés, professor emeritus of history at the University of California, Riverside.
• Presentation of Cortés' autobiographical play titled “A Conversation with Alana.”
• Geneva community panel on “The Geneva/ Hobart and William Smith Partnership.”
• Talk on “Multiple and Overlapping Identities and Allegiances: Ethnic Diversity in the 21st Century” by Larry Shinagawa, director for the Center of Culture, Race and Ethnicity at Ithaca College.
• Trustee and alumni/ae panel on “The Difference Differences Make.”
• Performance by singer/songwriter Magdalen Hsu-Li.