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2010/11 First Year Seminar

Instructor Section #
Immelman, Pamela 100-01A, 11A
Kendall, John 100-02A, 04A
Flynn, Patrick 100-03A, 05A
Wolak, Roseann 100-06A, 15A
Lynch, Julie 100-07A, 19A
Brash, Carol 100-08A
Olson, John 100-09A
Walker, Greg 100-10A
Allen, Neal

100-12A

Gazich, Robert 100-13A
LaFountaine, Janna 100-14A
Cunningham, Mickey 100-16A, 28A
Connell, Martin 100-17A, 26A
Berger, Mary Jane 100-18A, 32A
Mancuso, Luke 100-20A
Malone, David 100-21A
McCarter, Maureen 100-22A
Costello, Kate 100-23A, 47A
Wielkiewicz, Richard 100-24A
Lindgren, Carl 100-25A, 39A
Drazenovich, Dana 100-27A, 42A
Schnettler, Lynn 100-29A
Callahan, Matt 100-30A, 51A
Harkins, Matt 100-31A
Johnson-Miller, Elizabeth 100-33A
Schaaf, Sarah 100-35A
Riley, Susan 100-36A, 50A
Shouse Tourino, Christina 100-37A
Odette, Elaine 100-38A
Harkins, Jessica 100-40A
Campbell, Brian 100-41A
Cook, Jeanne 100-43A
Davis, Julie 100-44A
Anderson, Jeff 100-45A
Erickson-Grussing, Angela 100-46A
Nelson, Sheila 100-48A
Ochu, Jean 100-49A
Richert, Matt 100-52A
Mayers, Ozzie 100-53A
Thomas, Steven 100-54A
Peterson, Cindy 100-55A, 56A
Laliberte, David 100-57A
Mharapara, Tago 100-58A
Johnson, Jeff 100-59A
Gomes, Sebastian 100-60A
Marwitz, Willard 100-61A
Bolin, Chris 100-62A


2010/11 Honors First Year Seminar

Nairn, K/Crumley, J/Ziegler, L Honors 100-01A
Livingston, Michael Honors 100-02A
Shouse Tourino, Christina Honors 100-03A
Kraemer, Kelly Honors 100-04A
Hayes, Nick Honors 100-05A
Prevost, Gary Honors 100-06A

 

 2010/11 Transfer First Year Seminar

Malone, Cynthia                    FYS 201-01F
Atkins, Annette FYS 201-02F

 

FYS 100-01A, 11A         Immelman, Pamela 
Personal Development Through Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking: In this course students will develop the interdependent skills of critical thinking, reading, writing, listening, group discussion, and public speaking. Development of oral and written communication will be organized around our particular course focus, Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking, and Personal Development. Students will begin to establish patterns of lifelong learning to seek and integrate knowledge of self and the world.

FYS 100-02A, 04A      Kendall, John
In Search of Academic Connections:
These sections of First-Year Seminar (FYS) will ask the question "What if...?"  To help us to respond academically to that question, we'll be we'll be reading and discussing and "viewing"-a lot of material. We'll read academic essays, novels, short stories, textbooks, poetry, scripts, and grammar handbooks (to name some few). Guided discussion during the class periods will follow each of the readings as we work to make obvious and not-so-obvious personal and academic-communitywide connections with the texts we have read or the films we have viewed. With each assignment, there will be a writing exercise-which is where the classroom discussion will begin. By reading "good" texts and writing about "good" texts, we will attempt to create more academic and more thoughtful students; ultimately creating more thoughtful and more academic members of this academic and global community.

FYS 100-03A, 05A       Flynn, Patrick 
Popular Culture and Religion:
In order to effectively critique our culture, we must be able to identify it and examine its affects on us.  Since it is as familiar to us as the air we breathe, it may be a challenge to describe the culture and illuminate its effects.  How do technology, advertising, and economics drive us?  Cell phones and the internet certainly connect us in ways that would have seemed impossible a generation ago, but do these technologies change us in other, imperceptible ways?  Does our culture improve our lives and make us better people, or does it diminish us and push us toward the superficial? How does it affect our interior life, and our ability to be reflective? How does culture intersect with faith and religion? Do culture and faith work well together, or are they at odds with one another?  Through reading, discussion, and research we will attempt to step back, identify, and objectively critique our culture in order to determine its affects on our lives.

FYS 100-06A, 15A   Wolak, Roseann   
The Power of the Individual Versus the Power of the State: The framework of the course will focus on politics, freedom, and the power of the individual to create change. The course will be reviewing specific points in history from a social, cultural, political, and religious context.

FYS 100-07A, 19A      Lynch, Julie
Communicating Intentionally: a Study of Rhetoric: The theme of this course is an awareness of ethics, symbols, and values that determine how we are in quality relationships and larger social contexts. We will explore internal value formation and critically listen to various genres of contemporary literature and music to determine awareness of similar or dissonant messages of value. A blend of speaking, listening, writing, and role-playing will set the tone for students to engage in various means of intentional communication. The understanding of content, organization, and dynamic professional speaking/writing skills set the pace for students to participate in the complex study of those who've affected the masses. A required class project includes the creation of a social movement or campaign to serve a higher ethical good.

FYS 100-08A     Brash, Carol  
What's the Use of Art?
  Does your cup have any function other than to hold (and probably transport) a beverage?  Who is that thin bronze guy in the entry to the Abbey?  What's all the ruckus in the media about arts funding?   In this course, you will be encouraged to ask and consider similar questions and to read, think, discuss, speak, and write critically about how art is used and experienced. Each unit will introduce visual and material culture from both past and present and from both western and nonwestern cultures. You will also be asked to bring in and/or discuss objects that are meaningful to you. You will be asked to find and study visual art on campus.  We will consider the role of the visual arts in the mission of CSBSJU and in the wider world.  Themes that we may address include: sacred art, art and memory, controversial art, art as propaganda, art and science, and art and identity. In addition to examining objects in and out of class, we will read texts written by artists, art historians, historians, critics, journalists, students and other users of art. The class will also have assignments addressing on-campus field trips and other related on-campus arts opportunities.

FYS 100-09A   Olson, John  
Globalization:  Making Sense of a World of Change:  This course will explore the questions, "What is globalization?" and "What are its effects?"  We will pose these questions in areas of local and national politics, economics, literature and music, religion, and the physical environment.  Our objectives include observing how globalization and its effects manifest themselves around the world, analyzing how these themes interact and change or are changed by globalization, and improving our understanding of globalization's effects on ourselves and our communities.

FYS 100-10A     Walker, Greg   
Revolution in Music and Culture
:
  Music mirrors the prevailing morals and thinking of any society. Using the concept of romanticism as a framework, this course looks at that relationship. Whether set in the 1820's or the 1960's, the spirit of revolution permeates any romantic time period. Exploration of new ideas and changing social values lead a society to question its most basic values. In music, this often leads to drastic alterations of the current style. Understanding the spirit of romantic thinking through music and literature helps unravel the complexities of this social change.

FYS 100-12A       Allen, Neal   
Debating Democracy:
 This course explores issues and debates raised by democratic government in historical context. Students will take part in historical role-playing simulations of Ancient Athens, the American Revolution, and post-apartheid South Africa.  Students will write papers in their assigned historical roles, and also write traditional expository essays. No prior knowledge of politics or history is required for success in the course.

FYS 100-13A        Gazich, Robert
Followership, leadership and Benedictine Values:
We'll spend the fall looking at leadership and what if any role followership has in the equation.  Then in the spring we'll look at leadership and Benedictine values to see if there is any connection.

FYS 100-14A       LaFountaine, Janna
Men's and Women's Lives as Reflected through Sport:
This course is designed to develop critical thinking, discussion, writing and speaking skills using readings related to sport and society. Issues related to gender will be discussed and researched as well as historical, racial, cultural and economic perspectives. Students will be allowed to explore their own personal values and ethics using the theme of sport and society. Debating and researching controversial issues related to sport and society will occur during the second semester.

FYS 100-16A, 28A      Cunningham, Mickey
Framing a Life:
In this course we will be using various types of literature, including non-fiction, memoirs, novels, and plays in order to explore issues regarding the human condition. We will try to understand our own lives better by examining the tales of real and fictional characters. Some of the subjects we will cover include the rite of passage into adulthood, love, family, and death. We will try to answer questions like: What is a good life? Do we all need a passion of some sort in order to live a good life? What do we owe others as we pursue our own happiness? We will also have the opportunity to do some storytelling of our own. Some of the authors we will read include: Nicole Krauss, Mitch Albom, Jonathan Haidt, and Barbara Kingsolver.

We will focus on the visionary nature of the poetry of William Blake, Emily Dickinson, W. B. Yeats and Sylvia Plath. We will then delve into pop music relationships to the poetry we have read. For example, we could examine the lyrics and music of Jim Morrison in light of Blake's work. We could explore relationships among Dickinson, Plath, Ani DiFranco and other women in pop music. We could investigate the rhythmic use of language in reggae and hip hop music.

FYS 100-17A, 26A   Connell, Martin
God and Politics:
The United States was founded in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries with separation of church and state as a fundament of the new nation, the First Amendment of the Constitution. Yet God and theology were then and remain now vital ingredients of American politics, culture, and society. While the primary purpose of the First-Year Seminar is to acquire skills in research, writing, and public speaking, members of this First-Year Seminar will practice these skills as they consider the interaction of faith and politics in two arenas:

  • At the national level, reading and thinking critically, discussing, and presenting various points of view from news media and partisan debates of current events and issue.
  • At the local level, discussing how the Catholic and Benedictine character of the founding monasteries influences campus politics and social environments at Saint Ben's and Saint John's.
  • Questions for students to consider in preparing for the Seminar:
  • What and in whom do you believe?
  • How would you articulate these beliefs to your friends? to a grandparent? to those you'll meet at CSB/SJU? to a monk or faculty resident? to someone you'd like to date?
  • How are your beliefs (or absence of them) observable in your everyday life? in conversations? behaviors? daily habits?
  • How do your core beliefs inform your politics? your view and critique of society?
  • How much does or will your faith (or doubts) influence your future voting?
  • Does and should one's personal faith (or atheism) get a fair representation in the campus and national political arenas?

Whatever their level of theism or atheism, students should stay informed about U.S. politics, be attentive to the interaction of politics and religion as you are introduced to new environments as you arrive on the campuses: dormitories, dining halls, classes, clubs, and community-building activities at Saint Ben's and Saint John's. Close observation will inform our discussions about the dynamics of belief and life in the course of the year-long seminar, leading toward a long research paper and presentation in the spring semester on a unique topic chosen by each student.

FYS 100-18A, 32A         Berger, Mary Jane
The Power of Story:
Storytelling is a persistent form of popular entertainment, whether people tell ghost stories around a campfire or watch the electronic glow of the television set.  Every culture has its own storytelling tradition of myths, legends, epics, fables, animal stories, fairy tales, and romances. Listeners take delight in the mythic powers of their heroes, laugh at the comic predicaments clowns and tricksters get themselves into, and feel awe---and sometimes terror---when they hear stories of unseen worlds and the supernatural. In our course, in order to experience the telling and hearing of stories, we will interview a variety of people and write their stories. Becoming critically aware of the way these culture stories shape your ideas, attitudes, and beliefs is the goal of reading and writing assignments in this class. Storytelling forms the basis of all writing, including the expository and analytical writing required in many classrooms. Stories and storytelling are central to the way that all people understand and interpret their experiences. People tell stories to make sense of the world and to explain their actions and ideas. We all possess a wealth of cultural stories, stories that shape our ideas, values, and tastes---stories that we inherit from the many different cultures we participate in. In effect, we do not create stories so much as they create us. Our stories come to us: we hear them around kitchen tables, at holiday gatherings, on neighborhood streets, and on the job. Based on the belief that everyone has a story and is a story, we will participate in the gathering and telling of stories.

FYS 100-20A        Mancuso, Luke
Here and Now: Critical Thinking on Social Issues in a Learning Community:
This course will introduce students to critical communication skills for survival in college and beyond: thinking/writing/reading/discussing with more than just unreflective opinions about the social issues that inform our social lives today. It will not be enough to state your opinions here: we will examine the assumptions behind our opinions. We will focus on a number of inflammatory social issues: affirmative action, abortion rights, gay marriage, environmental issues, education, the war on terrorism, trial by jury, etc.

FYS 100-21A         Malone, David
The Art of Reading:
What is the role of reading today? Has it changed with the advent of electronic media and the increasing emphasis on visual approaches to learning and communicating? This class will look at different kinds of texts - novels, graphic novels, miniature novels. We will also look at how art has told stories through the centuries and now whether visual media is taking on a different role. We will also "read" objects such as iphones and see what these objects can tell us about reading, texts and images. We will also speculate about how the visual and the textual will intersect in the future.

FYS 100-22A        McCarter, Maureen  
Sustaining the Planet
: The theme of this course is the health of planet Earth's natural environment and how it is impacted by human behavior. Using print, electronic, and visual media, we will study some of the looming environmental challenges we face and what steps we can take to mitigate the deleterious effects of certain human activities. Some of the questions we will consider are: What are the probable causes and consequences of climate change? How does industrial agriculture affect the environment and human welfare? Why should we, even in the land of 10,000 lakes, be concerned about the availability of fresh water?

What role does each of us play in creating a sustainable environment in which all living creatures can thrive?

FYS 100-23A, 47A     Costello, Kathleen
Citizens of a Global Society:
The purpose of this class is to explore global and local issues of current social significance. The class aims to introduce students to topics that affect the community where they live in direct and indirect ways. In particular, this course will ask students to try and understand some of these issues from different cultural perspectives. It will encourage students to try and understand why people from different social, economic, and religious backgrounds might view the same issue in profoundly different ways. The main unit topics this course will address during the two semesters are: Intercultural medicine, Food security and insecurity at home and abroad, Women and Islam in the Middle East and the West, Treaty Rights, State Governments, and Native Nations.

FYS 100-24A                         Wielkiewicz, Richard
The Environment, Technology, and Sustainability:
This course is designed to develop your critical thinking, writing, discussion, and speaking skills using readings in environmental issues and sustainability as the background. Emergence of the human species out of the Pleistocene era, when we survived as hunters and gatherers, into the agricultural and industrial eras was accompanied by radical changes in the impact of humans on the earth. Instead of being a component of a stable ecology, humans developed the ability to radically alter the environment with our science and technology. One goal of the class is to identify environmental issues that will be challenging the human species during the coming decades. If we adjust our behavior to be in harmony with our natural environment we may have a bright future in which energy and resources are available for everybody. On the other hand, we may find that the future is not as bright as we use up our planet's limited natural resources, cause increased global warming, destroy the earth's protective ozone layer, or poison ourselves with pollution. In this course, we will critically examine our current behavior toward the environment with the goal of identifying socially responsible and sustainable directions for the future.

FYS 100-25A, 39A        Lindgren, Carl
The Monstrous in Literature and Film
: More specifically, we'll ask what it means to be a "monster" and how this relates to the "big questions" about human nature, ethics, and identity. Texts may include Frankenstein, Beloved, Heart of Darkness, and Dr. Jekyl/Mr. Hyde. Movies may include Mystic River, several versions of Frankenstein, The Island of Dr. Moreau, Apocalype Now, and No Country for Old Men.

FYS 100-27A, 42A     Drazenovich, Dana
The Media that Mold Us:
Around-the-clock online news. A political message in a popular song. Pop-ups and billboards. We are constantly bombarded by information, from news headlines on our cell phones to advertising that reaches us virtually everywhere we go, including the bathroom. Mass media control much of our knowledge and play a role in molding our mindsets. What are its motives, how does it affect us, and why should we care? During fall semester of this course, we will examine major events such as 9/11, Hurricane Katrina and the Columbine school shootings through a variety of media lenses including news reports, documentary movies and popular music. In the spring, we will look at media-related issues such as freedom of speech on the internet, advertising's roles and effects in society and the way music has contributed to societal norms and some social movements. We also will examine the roles (ideal and real) of various mass media and look at ways to be a more savvy consumer. In the process, we will examine our own ideas, beliefs, knowledge and values and explore how mass media have helped shaped them. We will read the book "Columbine" and many news and scholarly journal articles, current and historic. We will watch documentaries including "9/11" and "Bowling for Columbine" and "Killing Us Softly 4: Advertising's Image of Women." We also will read look at many Web sites, listen to some music and discuss all of these issues, in-depth and together.

FYS 100-29A      Schnettler, Lynn
The Power of Story
: Stories are a powerful way to share our life experiences and open the hearts and minds of the readers. In this course students will use contemporary literature to improve reading, writing, critical thinking, discussion and presentation skills. Students will read and analyze several memoirs including Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson, The Unwanted by Kien Nguyen, and The Latehomecomer by Kao Kalia Yang. How do their stories affect you? What is your story?

FYS 100-30A, 51A     Callahan, Matt
Modern Stories, Modern Life:
In this course, contemporary fiction will be used as a lens through which we will examine the joys and the struggles of modern society. We will read, discuss and write about short stories as the class endeavors to answer the question "can there be any truth in fiction?"

FYS 100-31A      Harkins, Matthew
Education in Theory and Imagination:
What sort of risks and demands underlie a transformative educational experience? Through speaking, writing, and careful thought, we will consider the conceptual space education might occupy within both personal and broader cultural contexts. Authors read will likely include Plato, George Orwell, Virginia Woolf, and Don DeLillo, among others.

FYS 100-33A       Johnson-Miller, Elizabeth
Beginning Your Reading and Writing Life:
While many fear that the book is dead, in this class, we will immerse ourselves in literary works that are sure to please. We might even try our hand at some creative writing. In addition, we will strive to gain critical thinking, reading, writing and speaking skills that will lead not only to success in the classroom, but also on whatever path life takes you on after college.

FYS 100-35A       Schaaf, Sarah
Music as a Form of Political Expression:
Have you ever paid attention to the messages in songs? In this course we will explore political expression through various genres of music from the past and present. By looking at music through an academic lens we can gain insight into social issues and consider views other than our own.

FYS 100-36A, 50A       Riley, Susan
College, USA:
Proud parents unload box after box from the car, hauling clothes and endless electronic devices to junior's new dorm room. Emotional good-byes accompany promises to call/email/text daily. What happens next? The goals of the various protagonists in this familiar drama vary widely. Students seek independence and good times, with a nod to learning and career preparation. Parents hope their sons and daughters remain healthy and safe (from drinking, drugs, sex, loneliness, stress, academic failures and more) while developing marketable skills (especially given the heavy debt burden many will carry after college). Professors hope - wistfully, perhaps naively -- to equip these young scholars with more sophisticated tools of communication and analysis, and to ignite an intellectual passion in their hearts and minds, all leading to a spirited exploration of our fascinating, frightening, inspiring world. What is happening today in this charged setting of college life?

In this class, we will explore the cultural, economic, psychological, political, and historical place of college in American life while developing vital skills in writing, speaking, discussion, critical thinking, information literacy, and research. The specific topics we may study include: the liberal arts vision, media images of college, the transition from home and high school to collegiate independence, dorm life, partying and hooking up, the rising costs of college, and other elements of 21st century undergraduate life.

FYS 100-37A   Shouse Tourino, Christina
Cultures in Crisis:
This course will explore artistic texts that attempt to narrate the unspeakable. Our goal is two-fold. First, we will view these stories as art and learn what they communicate to us about the struggles of cultures different from our own. Second, we will view these stories as objects of daily use and probe their structure and function. Who is the target audience? Is the work widely read and financially successful? Does it address a particular political, social, or economic problem? What is at stake in the way the story is told, sold, and read? In this way we will work bifocally, taking in what these texts "witness" to us, as well seeking to understand the complications of that testimony. Expect a vigorous workload: this course is a good choice for students who love to read and who are curious about social history. Among others, texts may include: Maus I and II, Art Spiegleman; Native Son, Richard Wright; Shaft, Gordon Parks; Spike Lee; and Death and the Maiden, Ariel Dorfman.

FYS 100-38A     Odette/Lanie & Schnettler/Lynn
The Power of Story
: Stories are a powerful way to share our life experiences and open the hearts and minds of the readers. In this course students will use contemporary literature to improve reading, writing, critical thinking, discussion and presentation skills. Students will read and analyze several memoirs including Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson, The Unwanted by Kien Nguyen, and The Latehomecomer by Kao Kalia Yang. How do their stories affect you?  What is your story?

FYS 100-40A   Harkins, Jessica
The Art of the Essay:
This course will be devoted to the study of the essay in its various forms. As we encounter different kinds of essays in our reading, we will also look at the essay's ties to genres such as the short story and novel, poetry, literary journalism and creative non-fiction. Students may expect to read in these multiple genres while developing a sharpened sense of the potential of the essay. Primary focus will be on the development of students' communication skills both in speech and in writing, and on reading and critical thinking skills as we explore diverse kinds of literature within the course. Students may expect to write autobiographical, analytical, researched, and creative essays over the course of the year, and to learn firsthand how writing is rugged and unusual, open and controlled through our study and practice of the essay as a form of art.

FYS 100-41A Campbell, Brian
Angles on the Arts:
The performing and visual arts will be explored from various perspectives-or angles. Reading and writing assignments and class activities will explore the points of view of the creator, performer, critic, and audience member. We will also take advantage of the rich artistic culture on the CSB/SJU campuses.

FYS 100-43A    Cook, Jeanne
Women, Culture, and the Contemporary World:
What do you have in common with women from your mother's and grandmothers' generation? What sets you apart? What do you have in common with women from other cultures and co-cultures? How does culture help shape women's identities? A wide variety of women's issues will be covered in this course. Possible topics include body image, biology, culture and gender, dating/courtship practices, gendered language, inspiring women, notions of beauty, power, sexism, sex roles, and sexuality. Additional topics will be generated by the class. Expect lively conversation, stimulating readings, and lots of food for thought.

FYS 100-44A       Davis, Julie
Crisis Moments in History: Democracy, Citizenship, and Social Change:
This course will explore historical moments of crisis and social change, from 5th-century Athens, to 20th-century South Africa, to 21st-century America. In all of these times and places, we will meet people wrestling with fundamental social questions: What is a democratic society, and how should it work? What are the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, and who should have them? In the face of inequality and injustice, how can people create meaningful change? And how should a society in crisis balance the tension between democracy and security, individual self-interest and the common good?

In the Fall semester, students will experience historical crisis moments in-depth and first-hand. They will participate in elaborate role-playing games, allowing them to get inside the heads of people from the past, make critical decisions, and shape the course of history. In the process they will build skills in persuasive writing, public speaking, strategic analysis, collaborative planning, and reflective discussion. In the Spring semester, students will engage in critical reading, writing, and analysis; further their skills in reflective discussion, collaborative work, and public speaking; and research, write, and present a substantial scholarly research paper.

FYS 100-45A    Anderson, Jeff
That's Not Fair! Struggling with Inequality in the Modern World:
How many times have you felt, uttered, or heard those three words - That's Not Fair! - Plaintively asserted by others? Inequality is all around us. In this class we will use a mixture of social science texts, novels, short stories, and other forms of artistic expression to confront the various faces of inequality. In addition to exploring the big three of race, class, and gender, we will delve into cases of inequality in areas like physical beauty, health, crime, military service, and just plain old dumb luck. From affirmative action, to compulsory military service, to the lives of the rich and famous, to families living through desperate times, we will wrestle with issues calling forth our personal experiences, analytical skills, critical eyes, as well as our passion and compassion. During this year of reading, writing, and discussing we will develop skills in careful listening, advocacy, and critical analysis, with the goal of improving the ways in which individuals and societies confront inequality.

Possible novels/literature to be used:

  • The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison
  • Nickel and Dimed, Barbara Ehrenreich
  • To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
  • White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son, Tim Wise
  • The Things They Carried, Tim O'Brien
  • The Death of Ivan Ilych, Leo Tolstoy

FYS 100-46A      Erickson-Grussing, Angela
Living Responsibly in the 21st Century:
What does it mean to live responsibly? How do we get the most out of all our society has to offer while still respecting ourselves and those around us? Are there individuals that live more responsibly than others - and what role does society play in living responsibly? To answer these questions and more, first we'll discuss the theories and definitions of responsibility. Then, using that knowledge, we'll attempt to better understand our responsibilities as individuals and members of social groups by examining the concept of responsibility in the contexts of our own lives as well as those of public policy and government, modern technology, our natural environment, and others.

FYS 100-48A         Nelson, Sheila
Identities:  Differences that Matter
We hear a lot of talk these days about identity-the politics of identity, racial and ethnic identity, sexual and gender identity, religious identity, even identity hate groups...Our society seems obsessed with labeling, categorizing, and grouping people in often polarizing ways: Democrat-Republican, Conservative-Liberal, Christian-Muslim-Atheist, citizen-undocumented immigrant, and on and on. Even in your high school, you probably categorized each other based on interests and abilities: from athlete (jock) to brain to techy to nerd to Goth-the various groups within which teens vie for status... So who are you? Can you separate the self from all the labels? Are you simply the sum total of all your identities? Are there some characteristics that are common to all of us? Which differences matter-and which don't? In this First Year Seminar we will explore various identities; we'll do some reading of scholarly journals, take a look at what sociologists can tell us about the relative importance of these identities, but we'll primarily use novels and movies as a way to open up the question of identities and explore those identities that are most relevant to you and your college experience. As your professor, I will lay out the framework for the first semester, and second semester you as a class will decide which identities you'd like to pursue further.

FYS 100-52A                         Reichert, Matt
Rules Were Made to be Broken: Creativity and Disobedience:
What would happen if everyone simply did as they were told? Would we be where we are today if no one colored outside the lines or cut a few corners here and there? On the other hand, what if no one took any guidelines or regulations seriously? In this section of First Year Seminar (FYS), we will explore events and movements though out the human experience that set our global community on a new course. We will specifically examine the concept of "disobedience", its effects on society and our experience of it, and its interaction with and influence upon creativity. The course of our investigation will lead us to explore the worlds of literature and the arts, mathematics and the sciences, history and political science, philosophy and theology.

In addition, we will also seek to develop our critical thinking, reading, writing, listening, discussion, and public speaking skills. Since human beings learn by doing, we will be reading and writing a lot - every day, in fact. We will encounter novels, biography, poetry, mathematical theory, philosophical treatises, and masterpieces of visual art and music. As we wade through this ocean of material together, you will contribute directly to the conversation by leading class discussions, debating positions, conducting your own research and reporting your findings.

FYS 100-53A                       Mayers, Ozzie
Transitions in Life, Literature, and Film
: "The drama is in the transitions."
Ralph Waldo Emerson Welcome to the College of St. Benedict and St. John's University and to your First-year Symposium course, "Transitions in Life, Literature, and Film." This symposium focuses on how we as individuals and as members of world communities respond to and live out change. We'll explore the small and mammoth changes of the past, the present, and the future by recording the types of significant changes each of us experiences daily and over extended periods of time. In addition to using our own records of changes we live through, we'll explore how others-both within our own culture and in several other cultures-have rendered the experience of transitions in fiction, essays, and films. We'll use these readings for informal and formal writing assignments, small and large group discussions, and short class presentations. It is essential to you as a student in this course to realize that becoming a competent writer and speaker is not a magical event but a life-long process that has already begun. Therefore, I have organized this course with the belief that your work is always in process, with the potential of changing and strengthening.

FYS 100-54A    Thomas, Steven
Transnational Multiculturalism and Planetary Civil Society
: For the first semester, we will read literature from a range of cultural locations and political perspectives both from within the United States and from around the world. For the second semester, we will focus on democratic civil society and how to practically plan for a career.

FYS 100-55A, 56A      Peterson, Cindy
The Art of Struggle
: you deal with personal adversity? In this year-long course we will examine a variety of individual, national, and global issues from several perspectives. We will explore a range of art forms from creative non-fiction to fiction, poetry, film, and other artistic expression to look at the ways that various people & cultures of the past and present have dealt with struggle. This course will include informal and formal writing assignments, small and large group discussions, and short class presentations in order to help students develops the skills necessary to become critical thinkers and capable researchers.

FYS 100-57A                         Laliberte, David
Pastimes: Sport in American History

"What is truly chilling is that there are a lot of smart people interested in sports.

That just gives you no hope at all for the human race."

-Fran Lebowitz, writer

Why do so many Americans care about competitive athletics? Why do sports matter in contemporary America, and why have they mattered in our nation's past? Most importantly, what has been the significance of play throughout the American experience?  This interdisciplinary course will investigate such diverse historical topics as the cultural folkways of American Indian lacrosse; the social functions of cricket in nineteenth century New York; the racial complexities of Jews, Cubans, and blacks in Negro League baseball; the environmental and financial effects of publicly-funded professional sports stadiums in 1970 Cincinnati and in 2010 Minneapolis; the complexities of gender identity in women playing amateur contact sports; and the significance of Venus and Serena Williams' tennis fashions in early twenty-first century America.  In all, this course will enhance student reading, writing, discussion, public speaking and critical thinking skills while challenging students to ponder the meaning of play in our lives.

FYS 100-58A                         Mharapara, Tagonei
The Politics of US Immigration:
They take our jobs!" "They don't pay taxes!" "They overwhelm our schools and hospitals!" "They should know how to speak English!" As you may have already deduced, the theme of this seminar is the vexing and emotional issue of Immigration in the United States. We will begin the exploration of this conflict-ridden topic by reading a historical account of Immigration. Why have immigrants left their homelands to start anew in a place they have no roots? Why are immigrants willing to risk their lives to enter the US illegally via sea and land? Why are politicians advocating for the erection of physical barriers in one part of the country and not in another? How do citizens in border and non-border states feel about immigration? As a nation of immigrants, does restricting entry of new immigrants present a moral conflict for citizens? In this seminar, we will examine these and other important questions pertaining to immigration policy in the US. It is my goal to assist you in the development of your critical thinking skills through reading, writing, public speaking and discussion.

FYS 100-59A      Johnson, Jeff
The Rhetoric of Literature:
The Rhetoric of Literature calls students to wonder about and celebrate the endless necessity of stories in our lives.  All thoughtful people are thirsting for great stories: we tell them, hear them, and read them, while sometimes forgetting the points of intersection between the narratives of the world and the ones called our lives.  After some introduction to the theories of classical rhetoric, we will turn our attention across the year to some great works of literature which showcase some of the forms literature can take, including but not limited to the epic, the tragic, the poetic, as well as modern novels and short stories. We will celebrate and wonder about the relationship between writers and readers, while engaging ourselves in these two important activities. This course will explore many important questions: how does literature work? Is literature a mirror that works badly, or might it inform our humanity through its beauty, persuasion, and various warnings? How many ways can a text be approached and interpreted? Many great writers will serve us, including the ancient Greeks, William Shakespeare, and the poets and prose stylists of modernity.

FYS 100-60A         Gomes, Sebastian
Jesus of Nazareth: 
He has been one of the most significant and influential figures in human history. He has been called a savior, a teacher, a mystic, a revolutionary, a prophet, a miracle worker, a magician, and even a myth.  He has been the symbol of and means for peace, mercy and love to millions around the world. He has been a source of hatred and violence throughout history. His effect on Western civilization has been and continues to be profound. He remains today an enigma and a paradox.  He once asked his disciples, "Who do you say that I am?" (Matt 16:15) This enduring question will be the topic of our First Year Seminar.

FYS 100-61A     Marwitz, Willard
Individual Being within the Collective Society:
The primary role of this seminar is the development of ethical and effective communication skills, critical thinking skills, as well as research skills; there also will be a rigorous focus on the fundamentals of listening, reasoning, writing, speaking, and discussing. The title serves to define a broad scope of this communications seminar which will respond to some contemporary moral, ethical, spiritual, political, economic, and social issues.  Texts will include Anthem by Ayn Rand, Siddhartha by H. Hesse, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, and Candide by Voltaire. Students will be required to submit contemporary articles/essays apropos to themes for discussion. Issues the student might be aware of when searching could include the following: Is the taking of a human life ever justifiable? Should one surrender personal freedoms for the "greater good"? What determines whether or not a human institution is legitimate or ethical? What are the responsibilities of the individual to his/her society?

HONR FYS 100-01A      Nairn, Kris/Crumley, Jim/Ziegler, Lynn  
Women & Math and Science:  This course is an Honors Symposium designed for the MaPFYSS program for women in Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, and Pre-engineering. This program is a four-year program of problem-solving and research for students in Mathematics, Physics, Computer Science, and Pre-engineering. The course will have an almost entirely scientific bent. We will do readings, papers, discussions, and presentations all centering about the general topic of the nature of science.

Unlike most such Honors FYS this course will be entirely filled by the women admitted to the MaPFYSS program. There will be three instructors - Kris Nairn from Mathematics, Jim Crumley from Physics, and Lynn Ziegler from Computer Science.

 The FYS topic will be the nature of scientific knowledge but we will approach this central theme from multiple viewpoints - readings from mathematics and science books, science fiction, and the philosophy of science. A secondary theme will be problems in science that are unresolved and how the scientific community approaches such topics.

HONR FYS 100-02A    Livingston, Michael  
Our Posthuman Future:   Science and technology have dramatically altered human culture and transformed human history.  Now we appear on the verge of significant scientific advances that raise a host of moral, political, and philosophical issues.  These scientific advances may alter what it means to be human and create posthumans.  In this section of FYS we will explore four emerging posthuman futures: the effect of drug enhanced humans; genetically engineered humans; robots; and cyborgs.  To explore these posthuman futures and the issues they entail, we will use science fiction novels, short stories, films, and plays (Frankenstein, Brave New World, Neuromancer, Blade Runner, R.U.R.) as well as essays, scientific articles, and serious nonfiction books such as Francis Fukuyama's "Our Posthuman Future," Peter Kramer's "Listening to Prozac," and Ray Kurzwell's "The Singularity is Near."

HONR FYS 100-03A      Shouse-Tourino, Christina   
Cultures in Crisis: This course will explore artistic texts that attempt to narrate the unspeakable. Our goal is two-fold. First, we will view these stories as art and learn what they communicate to us about the struggles of cultures different from our own. Second, we will view these stories as objects of daily use and probe their structure and function. Who is the target audience? Is the work widely read and financially successful? Does it address a particular political, social, or economic problem? What is at stake in the way the story is told, sold, and read? In this way we will work bifocally, taking in what these texts "witness" to us, as well seeking to understand the complications of that testimony. Expect a vigorous workload: this course is a good choice for students who love to read and who are curious about social history. Among others, texts may include: Maus I and II, Art Spiegleman; Native Son, Richard Wright; Shaft, Gordon Parks; Spike Lee; and Death and the Maiden, Ariel Dorfman.

HONR FYS 100-04A    Kraemer, Kelly
News of the World: This course will focus on developing first-year honors students' speaking, writing, thinking, and information literacy skills by engaging students in the study of current world events and international conflicts. Using The New York Times as our primary text, along with comparative content analysis of a variety of other news sources, the focus on understanding the news of the world will help students develop the confidence and competence they need in order to become knowledgeable participants in campus and community study and discussion of world events.

HONR FYS 100-05A      Hayes, Nicholas  
The Fourth Seal: Epidemics and Society from the Black Death to Aids
: This section of the First Year Symposium views the history of epidemics from the Black Death of medieval times to AIDS in our time. Our emphasis falls on the social, political and cultural reactions or often over-reactions to the plagues that have threatened society. Our discussion will revolve around case studies based on the Black Death of the 14th century, STDs from the 16th through 19th centuries, tuberculosis in the 19th and 20th centuries, influenza in the 1920s, polio, and the global AIDS epidemic today. Our objective in studying this issue is not to make us specialists in epidemiology or masters of the complex questions of medical history. For us, the history of epidemics is a vehicle to hone our skills in the disciplines and values of the liberal arts. The topic provides us with a means of understanding how we study the past and the roots of past history in today's world. What is more, the topic lends itself to a variety of inter-disciplinary perspectives expanding from history to cultural studies, public policy, gender, and race. Finally, disease is always with us. Students will be able to apply background from the class to recognize research and better understand how disease has affected their families, communities and world.

HONR FYS100-06A  Prevost, Gary  
The Quest for Social Justice:
This section of Honor's Symposium uses selections from literature, drama, film  , scholarly essays and works in political philosophy to introduce you to the perennial issues of political life ‑ equality, rights, freedom, legitimacy, obligations, justice, racism and sexism. We will approach these issues through a series of questions: What is the purpose of politics? What does politics assume about human nature? What are the proper ends of government? Can governments be morally justified? What is justice? Do citizens have obligations? Do States? Can political processes be fair? What are rights? Do states have them? What is the nature of political equality? Are political equality and freedom compatible? Is majority rule a valid method for settling political disputes? It is in wrestling with these kinds of questions that students will initiate the long process of developing a sense of politics.
At the beginning of the second semester we will explore two more perennial issues of politics and society ‑ homophobia and war. After that we will explore the social movements in U.S. history that have fought against racism, sexism, war, and homophobia.

TRANSFER FYS 201-01F        Malone, Cynthia 
Food, Film, Fashion, and Physics: Contemporary Writers Explore the World:  From food to fiction, from fashion to physics, from politics to poetry, writers for The New Yorker, Harper's, The Atlantic, and other magazines examine contemporary events and issues.  We'll read investigative journalism, discuss current debates, and generally become more informed readers of the world.

TRANSFER FYS 201-02F     Atkins, Annette 
Living in Place:  
In this section of FYS -- designed specifically for transfer students -- we will concentrate especially on understanding place and our place (wherever that is).  How does place identify and define us?  Would we be different if we grew up in a different place?  What is our place?  These are some of the questions we'll explore.  We'll define that place in various ways: CSB/SJU, Minnesota, our hometowns and home countries, our generations, our imaginations, our pasts.  We'll ground our examination in the landscape itself as well as in historical documents and artifacts of place.  Our readings will include: F. Hilary Thimmesh, This Place Called Collegeville, S. Grace McDonald, With Lamps Burning, and James J. Farrell, One Nation Under Goods: Malls and the Seductions of American Shopping.  We'll be devoting a significant amount of time to imagining, planning, researching, writing, and presenting a major essay on particular aspects of the topic.