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In which plans begin to take shape…

Let me tell you something that is awesome.  Making an amazing event happen that will affect a lot of people in a very positive way.

A major part of my position in Honors is to be the point person for summer academic enrichment programs for pre-college students, and 2013 is the third year of our three-year rotation to run the Governor’s Honors Academy for our state: three weeks of programming for 200 really excellent rising seniors.    While I am not “in charge” (I report to  both the Dean of the HC and the state Governor’s school coordinator on this project), I have an active hand in assembling the calendar for the event.  We have historical themes–in the past, The Gilded Age, and Between the Wars; this year, “From Ike to Nixon”–and we build as much programming around that as possible, fiction writers who have written on this period, a play that premiered in 1963, history faculty working on Civil Rights, a trip to the Andy Warhol museum, another to the Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame.

A lot of work has gone into the previous 30 years of this program such that I have a fantastic base to work with–and I’m not being a pollyanna here.  This year’s program will be actually packed with activities, and unless this year goes significantly worse that last year, the vast majority of these students will claim to have had a life-changing experience.

We’re at the stage where we’re putting together the events, recruiting guest speakers, and assembling the faculty whose classes will range from the rise of Science Fiction to the Story of DNA to the Red Power movement. It’s a moment full of the promise of summer, and minds expanding, and horizons with them.  It’s one reason why I came here in the first place.

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