New spring courses cover American leadership principles, Florida immigration, rebuilding the Big Easy, and other topics

New January Term hosts innovative, hands-on classes close to (and on) campus

Published Jan. 05, 2009

Lynn’s new core curriculum, titled the “Dialogues of Learning,” is now entering its second semester with an intriguing roster of spring courses that will cover personal, local, national and global topics. This spring, students will study renowned American leaders like George Washington, Ben Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson; immigration in Florida; the rebuilding of New Orleans; global environmental struggles; and ethical behaviors based on duty, dharma or deity; among other timely subjects.

Courses like these are intended to “make the students’ college experience more fruitful, and the Lynn experience more distinct,” noted Cynthia Patterson, vice president for academic affairs at Lynn, in an e-mail she distributed to incoming students and their parents this year. The Dialogues are organized around three distinct thematic areas of study: self and society, belief and reason, and justice and civic life. These classes, Patterson says, will ensure that a student’s time “is rewarded – with intensive experiences; fresh insight; a heightened awareness of him or herself, this country and the larger world; and perhaps most importantly, with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in a global society and economy.” (See selected course listings below.)

 J-Term courses close to home

Of course, before the spring term gets underway, Lynn will first be holding its inaugural January term. Lynn’s innovative January mini-term (J-term) that has students performing live on Broadway in New York City; traveling to Colorado to work behind the scenes at the 2009 ESPN Winter X Games; and seeing firsthand the inauguration of the United States’ 44th president in Washington, D.C.; will also host hands-on classes close to – and often on – campus.

The two-and-a-half week term (Jan. 7-23), titled the “Dialogues of Innovation,” will provide students with educational experiences focusing on original ideas, topics, pedagogies and/or experiential learning through 74 unique course listings including: “Saturday Night Lynn” (SNL) – Lynn’s version of “Saturday Night Live” where students will write, perform and film a live sketch comedy show on campus; and “What is it Really Like to be a Teacher?,” where students will shadow teachers at local schools to learn about planning, instructing, lunch, bus duty, dismissal and after-school meetings.

Locally (at Spanish River Park in Boca Raton and other locations in Central and South Florida), students will “Talk Trash and Track Turtles.” The students, led by professor Anna Krift, will be beach-combing while monitoring marine debris and analyzing the effect trash has on sea turtles. Other local courses include a “Study Tour of South Florida’s History and Culture,” where students will study South Florida’s ecosystems and wildlife, history, people and culture from the Art Deco District of Miami’s South Beach to the Everglades; “How to Start (or Buy) a Business on a Shoestring Budget,” where students will learn how to begin the entrepreneurial process with only an abundance of enthusiasm; and “Social Psychology Research Group for the Study of Culture, Politics and Society,” where students will develop a study to explore black leadership pre-Obama and determine if Obama’s candidacy changed the way we view black leaders. See a full listing of courses online.

Spring Core Courses at Lynn Include:

DBRG 200 A (belief and reason) – Duty, Dharma & Deity
In this class we will analyze how different religions and philosophical traditions view ethical behavior and how we should behave given certain conditions. Some arguments are based on duty, some on dharma and some on deity, although each of these words have different meanings in different traditions.

DJCA 100 N (justice and civic life) – Leadership
Think you’re a good leader? See how you measure up the great American leaders like George Washington, Ben Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson. You’ll work to improve your leadership skills while studying the great leaders of our nation.

DJCAE 100 D&F (justice and civic life) – Florida and Immigration
“Someday soon, everywhere in the United States will be like Florida.” This is a course with an American focus. Additional readings will be drawn from the genres of non-fiction, poetry and a novel for the purpose of introducing to students the role Florida is playing in immigration.

DJCA 100 K (justice and civic life) – New Orleans: Reconstructing Life & Culture in the Big Easy
New Orleans was decimated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Government at all levels failed to respond in a swift and sure way so as to assure a just and equitable delivery of resources and aid for the citizens of New Orleans. Despite the virtual bureaucratic collapse, the city of New Orleans has risen. The art, the food, the culture, the music, the people and the history refuses to die. Sheer resilience and optimism brought the city back to life. This course will explore the rebuilding and rebirth of the Big Easy: America’s true melting pot.

DSSG 100 A (self and society) – The Responsible Citizen: Awareness and Action in Today’s Global Society
“Discover your role in the complex issues facing today’s global society including the environment and sustainable development, energy issues, the global food crisis, poverty and international conflicts.” This course will present the definitions and theories that determine self resulting from defining events during the major historical periods to the present day. This course will also further an understanding and define the sense if self in relation to the rest of the world. An introduction of individuals living in other countries.