|Institute for Philosophy in Public Life announced|
The North Dakota Humanities Council (NDHC) has agreed to partner with the University of North Dakota College of Arts and Sciences to establish an Institute for Philosophy in Public Life through a NDHC grant of $39,000 a year for five years.
Under the direction of Jack Weinstein, associate professor of philosophy, the institute's goal is to bring an understanding of philosophy and philosophical research to the general public. The program is being proposed to the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education to seek "institute" status.
Brenna Daugherty, executive director of the NDHC, says "The institute represents a bold and innovative approach to fulfilling the council's mission of enriching the civic, intellectual, and cultural lives of North Dakotans." A lecture series geared to non-academic audiences is planned, as is a film series and discussion groups across the state.
The proposed institute also plans to partner with Prairie Public Radio to produce a monthly call-in radio show tentatively titled "Why? Philosophical Discussions About Everyday Life." Normally broadcast from Fargo, the show will sometimes be recorded in small-towns across the state, bringing all of North Dakota together for an on-going, statewide, conversation about philosophical issues. The radio show and the lectures will be streamed online making them accessible to anyone with an internet connection.
"Philosophy can seem irrelevant. It is filled with jargon, relies on complicated arguments, and refers to books most people have never heard of, let alone read. People lose interest and this makes it invisible in our day to day lives. This then leads to smaller enrollment in classes, dwindling university and research funding and, most all, the false idea that the subject offers no job opportunities. Yet, most of the great human insights began as philosophy and virtually every job can be made better with the skills philosophy offers. The subject teaches us how to get the most out of our lives as individuals, as members of the community, and as part of the human race. I want to make these opportunities available to everyone, not just my students. " Weinstein said.
In addition to philosophy, the College of Arts and Sciences offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certificates in a variety of traditional and emerging disciplines in the arts, sciences, social sciences, and humanities. Students are challenged to work alongside faculty and within the community to explore and expand the boundaries of knowledge and their own creativity. The research, scholarship, and creative activities of the nationally and internationally recognized faculty enhance teaching and learning as well as contribute to the expansion of the world's knowledge base.
For more information visit the College of Arts and Sciences at: http://www.und.edu/dept/artsci
For more information on the proposed Institute of Philosophy in the Public Life, contact Jack Weinstein at email@example.com