Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Provost Engages With Students In Seminar

Dr. Parkinson spoke with students in the Communication Senior Seminar

One of the classes I have enjoyed for years is the Coker College Senior Seminar, our Capstone Class in the communication major. The course covers a lot of territory with students most focused on their last major project for the degree -- a major research effort or a major communication project.

In additon to the research, several years ago I implemented a time for students to hear from others around the Coker campus with whom they might not have had much interaction. I asked those people just to come in an talk -- maybe some life lessons, maybe some life story, maybe some new ideas about life's exploration.  That section has always been a rewarding part of the class for me.

Earlier today Dr. Tracy Parkinson, the Provost and Dean of the College, sparked interest among the students by discussing several aspects of their own college life. He initiated some discussion about how we bring students into our learning community. He sparked some discussion on the role and place of liberal arts in our learning community. And, he sparked some discussion about how education and the workplace generally come together. It appeared, from where I was sitting, that the students enjoyed the interchange. Again, from my perspective, one of the really interesting things about being a Coker College faculty member is the ability to almost nonchalantly have a member of the college's leadership team take their time and become part of a class.

In a note back to the students Dr. Parkinson shared his enjoyement of the hour and also some of the articles he had used to spark some thoughts in his own head as he prepared for sharing with them. He said I could use the note for this blog:


Thanks for the opportunity to visit with you.  Spending time with good students reminds me why I wanted to make a career in this field.  Personally, I both had fun and learned a lot. I was really curious to get some of your perspectives on how students successfully adjust to college (or not), how students prepare themselves for what's next (or not), what liberal arts learning means (or not).

If you get really curious, here are a few of the articles I brought with me:

Tracy S. Parkinson, Ph.D.
Provost & Dean of the Faculty