Beloit commemorated the 10th anniversary of 9/11 with minds and hearts the week of Sept. 11. On Sept. 9, Beloit hosted a panel discussion featuring Beth Dougherty, Manger Professor of International Relations, speaking about U.S. foreign policy and the legacies of the war on terror; Georgia Duerst-Lahti, professor of political science, discussing the pervasiveness of security measures and centralization of government power; and Ann Davies, provost and dean of the college, speaking about civil liberties. On Sept. 11, Beloit held a public interfaith remembrance service with students, faculty, staff, and members of local faith communities.
Beloit screened the world premiere of a documentary film titled Mikhail Gorbachev, Confidential in September, in advance of its November debut in Russia. Filmmaker Gulya Mirzoeva has a connection to Russian language faculty at Beloit through a mutual friend and colleague at the Russian State University for the Humanities in Moscow, Beloit’s institutional partner for its Russian exchange program.
This January, 10 students will head to Jamaica to take part in Beloit’s first ethnographic field school in the Caribbean country. Over a three-week period, students will conduct ethnographic field work, intern at museums and a women’s center, and attend cultural events. Anthropology faculty Nancy Krusko and Lisa Anderson-Levy created the field school, which they hope to conduct biennially.
Students were urged to “be advised” and make the most of Advising Practicum, a new day-long program held annually in November to help students maximize their education. The day begins with advising workshops for first-years and sophomores and then expands to engage the entire student body in thematic sessions featuring guidance from faculty, staff, and student peers on a range of topics.
Award-winning British novelist and journalist Giles Foden served as the 2011 Lois and Willard Mackey Chair in Creative Writing at Beloit this fall. Foden has written four historical novels set in Sub-Saharan Africa, including The Last King of Scotland, about Ugandan dictator Idi Amin, which was made into an Oscar-winning film in 2007. In addition to teaching, he has been busy working on a new novel while in residence at Beloit. Tentatively titled Meet Me at the Blue Leopard, it is set in a dystopian America of the future.
Beth Dougherty, Manger Professor of International Relations at Beloit, has spent the last 18 months researching and writing the second edition of a comprehensive reference book on Iraq. A Historical Dictionary of Iraq, co-authored with Edmund Ghareeb, is expected to be published next year. The first edition was named a Best Reference Source in 2004 by Library Journal.
Professionals from museums in Pakistan visited the Logan Museum of Anthropology in August. In the U.S. for a month-long cultural heritage management workshop, the group also visited the Smithsonian Institution, Madison and Milwaukee museums, and the Cahokia Mounds in Southern Illinois.
A campus-wide conversation about food is underway after President Bierman formed a task force to consider Beloit’s aspirations for campus food service. The task force is seeking ways to more closely align dining services with the college mission, identify innovative approaches to connecting food services with teaching and learning, and address students’ increasing expectations for flexible, healthy, and socially responsible food options. In addition to speaking with campus constituents, task force members are researching best practices at colleges known for innovative food services. They will present their findings in February.
As part of its Asian Studies initiative, Beloit held a teaching colloquium this fall, drawing educators to focus on the theme of Transcultural Asia: Pedagogies of Borrowing and Trading in Undergraduate Education. The Wright Museum of Art complemented the conference with “Imaging Others: Cultural Intersections in the Colonial Period,” a traveling exhibit of Japanese prints, postcards, photos, and African sculpture and textiles that portray Europeans from the point of view of Asian and African artists.
This fall, Associate Professor of Anthropology Shannon Fie and her Principles of Archaeology students carefully combed the dirt in a patch of land between College Street and the World Affairs Center in preparation for a new sign, landscaping, and paving. Once their dig is completed, construction will begin on a new campus directional map, brickwork, and landscaping just north of WAC. Any artifacts found at the site will be catalogued in the Logan Museum of Anthropology.
Beloit’s Office of International Education rolled out two new student-centered programs this fall. One enlists students who have recently returned from study abroad locations as ambassadors who help describe and promote those programs to fellow students. Student ambassadors are nominated for the posts by faculty. Another International Education program fosters intercultural exchange between domestic and international students sharing a home on campus. Students who join are paired with a fellow student for conversation and activities, including practicing language skills.