by Christine Baksi
January 12, 2012
Dickinson’s spring semester commences on Monday, Jan. 23. As the countdown to classes begins, students share what courses they are most anticipating and why those courses have them anxious to return to campus. So, what makes a course exciting? According to these students, it’s all about their professors, collaborative projects, thought-provoking discussion, a deeper understanding of their majors and opportunities to explore off-major topics.
"Since finishing my neuroscience major, I have the freedom to take some classes from professors that I have heard great things about and subjects that are new and interesting to me like Greek Civilization and Spiritual Health and Healing," says Marianh Aman '12, who studied in the Norwich sciences program in England.
Marianh Aman '12
“I am most looking forward to my independent study, Advocacy in the Special Education System. With my developmental psychology professor, Greg Smith, I plan on exploring the legal, policy and cultural aspects of the special education system. The independent study is an exciting way of expanding on my developmental neuroscience background and delving into the complicated educational problems our country faces.”
Catherine Campbell ‘12
Biology, Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
“Having completed all of the course requirements for my major, I am excited to expand my knowledge about the business world and take Introduction to Business. I am grateful for the opportunity to take a course completely outside of my major and I believe it will complement my science background as I head into the professional world. The interdisciplinary approach Dickinson encourages with regard to education is wonderful in preparing students to think outside of the box and become leaders in their chosen profession. It is what sets Dickinson students apart contributing to their success.”
Senior Fabiola Cineas looks forward to an English course titled, The Generational. "This course will allow me to reflect on the major changes that have taken place throughout the 20th century and the challenges that face us now," says Cineas on a gondola in Venice, one of the many cities she visited while studying abroad in Bologna, Italy.
Fabiola Cineas ‘12
English, Political Science (minor)
“I am most looking forward to The Generational with Claire Bowen because it will encompass literature from various generations as its title suggests. We will be starting with texts from the World War I period and ending with texts published within the last two years. This class will certainly be a new and exciting experience for me as a majority of the English classes I have taken have been focused on one particular literary period or theme.”
"I've never been able to study this period in depth and I cannot wait to see what I will take away from this class," says Catie Duckworth '14, referring to a course that examines the Latin American independence movement.
Catie Duckworth '14
New Castle, Pa.
Spanish, International Studies
“I am most excited to take History 131: Latin American History II with Professor Marcelo Borges. Last semester, I took the first part of this class. It was by far my most interesting class. I couldn't believe how fast our 75-minute lectures flew by because I found the material so captivating. We stopped our studies right at the independence movement in Latin America and that is where we will pick up this semester.”
"The timing is perfect," says Will Nelligan '14 of the course Presidential Elections. The history and political science double major met Rep. Nancy Pelosi during a summer internship with the Senate Committee on Health, education, Labor and Pensions."
Will Nelligan ‘14
Political Science, History
“I'm particularly excited about Professor Andrew Rudalevige's class on presidential elections and about Professor Matthew Pinsker's class on historical methodology. Professor Rudalevige is a world-class scholar of the presidency whose dissertation at Harvard won the Robert Noxon Toppan prize for best of its year. More recently, he edited a book published by Congressional Quarterly on initial political science reactions to the Obama presidency. Historical Methodology sounds a bit more technical but Professor Pinsker sells it like few others can. Who better to learn from about the methods historians utilize in their research than the historian who discovered and restored President Abraham Lincoln's summer home?”
"I think the course will broaden my literary interests and knowledge in relation to women in society," says Kristyn Pankiw '14, referring to African-American Women's Fiction.
Kristyn Pankiw ‘14
German, Women's and Gender Studies
“I'm excited for my women's and gender studies class titled, African-American Women's Fiction, taught by Courtney Thompson, a visiting professor at Dickinson who I've heard great things about and I'm really excited to delve into this subject with her. I think the course will broaden my literary interests and knowledge in relation to women in society. We'll be reading an assortment of novels and short stories written by African-American women that deal with identity, race, class and psychology. It should be a great course!”
Mary Kate Skehan ‘12
“The course I'm most looking forward to is my senior seminar, the 403-404 sequence. There's a real sense, in my 404 class as well as in the major generally, that the senior thesis should be tackled together. The 13 other students in my class are my collaborators and I'm looking forward to getting their feedback, reading their work and just generally not being alone during many late-night-freak-out sessions I have over the next four months. I've already experienced 403/404 to breed not only great work, but also great friendships. The thesis project is an entirely new and different kind of challenge, requiring a scope of argument and a depth of knowledge that we've never had to develop before. It's the most difficult thing I'll do at college academically, and more than anything, I feel ready for it.”
Kim Starfield ‘12
“I am actually excited about taking my first class in the religion department, Judaism with Professor Andrea Lieber. Dickinson's liberal-arts curriculum offers opportunities to take classes outside your major that expand your mind in different ways. I'm looking forward to learning more about the Jewish faith and tradition, but also comparing it to other major religions in the world.”
"Part of the beauty of a liberal-arts education is that I can count on history, philosophy and other majors to bring their unique perspective to class," says senior class president Teddy Wilhite, who toured many European cities while studying abroad in Italy. He's pictured at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin.
Teddy Wilhite '12
“I'm really excited to be taking INST 290: International Relations in Historical Context with Professor Doug Stuart. So much of the international system is determined by history and the figures that dominated it and this class should help to put all of that in perspective in today's modern era. I'm most looking forward to the discussion in this class.”