We all came here to learn. Whether it is your first year here or, like me, the 27th, we have all come, and stayed, because Denison presents an incredible environment in which to learn.
Right now, though, we may first need to un-learn, and then learn in new ways.
We’ve got a situation where some awful things were overheard outside a recent party—racist, homophobic, misogynistic slurs. Despite initiating an immediate investigation, we don’t actually know who said what to whom. It happened, but we have no known offender, and we have no individually identifiable “harmed party.”
But the incident indirectly hurt many and has prompted lots of conversations. Within those, there’s been anecdotal reporting of other ugly incidents—epithets …
By Mark Orten, Director of Religious & Spiritual Life
I asked a diverse group of thoughtful students “How do you practice your faith at Denison?”
Speaking from different perspectives about matters of faith and the practice of it, they offered some really creative “snapshots” of their take on the practice of faith at Denison:
“At Denison, even when you are walking across the campus you just look up at the sky, and all of the beauty of this place… just noticing it; that’s practicing.”
“College is busy, and so people say, ‘I don’t have time for formal practices.’ But you always have time to do something that is part of your faith —even if small. Even if you’re …
By Catherine Champagne, Coordinator of Alcohol, Drug and Health Education
There are many benefits of living in a small, residential community like Denison. One of the things I appreciate about being on the hill are the many opportunities for close bonds and friendships to develop. When walking across campus, this friendship is visible in the number of students who greet each other with enthusiasm, the groups of friends grabbing a bite in Slayter, and in the subtle acts of kindness observed between students and staff alike. These social ties speak to the character of the Denison community, and also play an important role in shaping students’ overall health and well-being.
As someone who is personally and professionally dedicated to promoting …
by Kathleen Powell, Director of Career Exploration & Development
By now your sons and daughters are back at college to finish out their first year. During the break you may have heard about their classes, their professors, their clubs and organizations and their dreams for the summer or life after college! For some students, they have no idea what’s out there or what they could pursue after graduation. Others are very firm in their path, some focusing on what they believe they know or have seen; perhaps the pre-law or pre-health tracks. However, if you would ask your son or daughter to detail why they are interested in a particular career field or even more pointedly, why it would be …
By Kathleen Powell, Director of Career Exploration & Development, and Zach Pavol, Assistant Director of Career Exploration & Development
In the next few weeks, thousands of students will be returning home for their winter break. Students see this as a much needed break from academics. What they might encounter when returning home is a new conversation with their parents and relatives. The age old questions of what are you going to do when you graduate? What are you going to do with your major? What can you do with a liberal arts degree? As parents of college students, we often think about “How can I help my student get an internship or a “good job” when they graduate.” Before you …
By Crystal Lapidus-Mann, Staff Counselor, and Catherine Champagne, Coordinator of Alcohol, Drug, and Health Education
As final exams loom ever-closer, our thoughts go to our students. Over the next week, we know that students will spend many hours focused on studying, writing, and working tirelessly on final projects. Although these practices are necessary for academic success, the accomplishment of these tasks sometimes happens at the expense of students’ personal health and wellness (“all-nighters,” anyone?).
As staff members of Denison’s Whisler Center for Student Wellness, we have witnessed first-hand the effects of stress on our students. Staff counselors in particular have the honor of being welcomed into our students’ private lives, and are privy to the healthy, and (sometimes) unhealthy ways, …
By Julie Tucker, Coordinator of Assessment & Research
Students’ co-curricular involvement at Denison is more than a way to fill their days or meet new people. While we certainly hope that students’ co-curricular involvement allows them to make friends and enjoy their time on the hill, we intend that these experiences provide students the opportunity to gain and strengthen skill sets that prepare them for their careers and experiences beyond Denison. One such experience is the position of a Leadership Fellow. Leadership Fellows are peer educators who assist in the planning of leadership programs (e.g. LeaderShape, DU Lead) and create new leadership-related workshops for campus organizations.
To provide insight into what the Leadership Fellows learn from their experience and to …
Open Letter to Men By Erik Farley, Associate Dean & Director of Multicultural Student Affairs
As a man on this campus, I am issuing a call to all Denison men: we must contribute to conversations about relationship violence. I call upon men from all socio-economic backgrounds and ethnicities to consciously rid our community of this social ill. And I call upon our members to brainstorm practical ways in which we, as men, could end men’s violence against members of our campus and our communities beyond the Hill.
We know that many cultural traditions and images in the media suggest that a “real” man hides his emotions, views sexual experience as a status symbol, and solves problems with aggression. While these …
By Laurel Kennedy, Vice President for Student Development
There has been lots of attention lately to the unique challenges of being a first-generation college student. One article concluded by calling on colleges and universities to ensure that their faculty and staff include members who were first-generation college students in their day.
Whether I was technically a first-gen college student depends on the definition we’re using. Some institutions identify a student as “first-generation” if neither of their parents attended college, ever. Some look at whether a parent graduated from college. One institution has many different categories—one parent versus two, attended versus graduated, etc.
Parental experience with higher education is considered important because it correlates with academic retention and success. …
By Laurel Kennedy, Vice President for Student Development
Alcohol abuse is a public health issue that impacts all communities. Denison has worked aggressively to address the problem on our campus, and much of what we are doing is succeeding and could provide a roadmap for other colleges, high schools, and communities.
Our work started from three assumptions. First, Denison has excellent students who can be engaged as problem solvers and community builders. Second, as a leading liberal arts college, we should be on the vanguard of addressing big issues. And third, there are good models that can be adapted to our context.
We adopted the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) “3-in-1” framework, which addresses prevention, …