Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Brie Diehl Interns at the Ohio State House

Briana Diehl (Political Science, 2013, shown in the photo with Bill Batchelder, Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives) is now working as an LSC Fellow in the Ohio House of Representatives, where she works for the majority leadership. She says that she does all the normal office stuff, “but most importantly I do research and write columns. The columns are from the representatives’ point of view, and along with that I do talking points and other similar things. The research is either for current legislation (to understand it a little more) or for future legislation. I look at different things and see if there are any patterns that would bring about a need for legislation based off of anything from a constituent call to something the representative heard in a meeting or on the news. I am in constant contact with people from all different aspects of the state house and I truly believe that the Ashbrook program prepared me for the research and the writing that I do and, most importantly, for the common day to day networking and interactions that I have with other people around capital square. Every day is something new and I really have learned so much already, that I can’t stress enough how great this opportunity is.”

The paid internship program is run by the Legislative Service Commission at the statehouse, and it is a wonderful opportunity for recent graduates. More information available at the LSC website here

Liberal Arts majors and long term earnings

Liberal arts majors may start off slower than others when it comes to the postgraduate career path, but they close much of the salary and unemployment gap over time, a new report shows.
See the story at here.

AU Grants for Study Abroad

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Natural Law and Public Affairs Seminar

Here is a good opportunity for an advanced undergraduate interested in a serious discussion of natural law: 

Natural Law and Public Affairs Seminar

July 16-20, 2014
Princeton, New Jersey

The last several decades have witnessed a revival of natural-law theory among English-speaking moral and legal philosophers. This ethical tradition of Aristotle and Aquinas offers a compelling alternative to the Kantian and consequentialist systems that have dominated modern moral philosophy. It also provides powerful rational defenses of moral principles often identified as Judeo-Christian, but common also to many great Muslim as well as ancient Greek and Roman thinkers–indeed, principles dominant for centuries throughout the West.

This seminar will begin by engaging contemporary analytic work on the foundations and methods of natural-law moral reasoning. But the better part of it will be spent examining arguments that apply natural-law insights to a variety of moral and political issues, including religious liberty and the role of the state; justice in commerce and in communication; just war and capital punishment; abortion and euthanasia; and marriage and sexuality.

Robert P. George, Princeton University
Christopher Tollefsen, University of South Carolina
Ryan T. Anderson, The Heritage Foundation
Sherif Girgis, The Witherspoon Institute

The seminar is for advanced undergraduate and early graduate students interested in normative ethics and contemporary applications. Participants may but need not be versed in natural-law theory.

Application Requirements and Instructions
Please submit the following forms and documents via email to Serena Sigillito ( by March 1, 2014:

1. Completed Application Form.
2. Curriculum Vitae or résumé with all previous academic and professional experience.
3. Cover Letter expressing the reasons for your interest in the seminar and discussing any relevant experience or familiarity with the topic.
4. One Letter of Recommendation from a professor with whom you have recently studied.

Registration Fee
There is a $100 registration fee required of all accepted applicants, covering room and board for the duration of the seminar.

For more information, see the announcement here.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Academe Quit Me

This somewhat sad post from a soon to be former English prof at OSU makes a good suggestion about what is wrong with the humanities in the contemporary university.  D.G. Myers observes that about the only thing English professors can now agree on is that they can't agree on anything, including why one should teach (and presumably also learn) English literature. When there is no sense of a common pursuit, and we could add, no sense of a tradition to preserve, explore, and extend, then no individual course or professor can know where or even whether he or she fits into the whole.  Instead of a discipline, we get a random collection of boutique courses and particular interests and it is not really very important if any one course or professor disappears.

There is also this: "humanities course enrollments are down to seven percent of full-time student hours, but humanities professors make up forty-five percent of the faculty."  It seems obvious that that can't continue.

Overseas Internships? Foreign Service Careers?

Find out about these and other opportunities at the Jan 23 information session about career opportunities in the U.S. Foreign Service.  Dr. Michelle Jones  will present information about career opportunities, including internships, fellowships, and Civil and Foreign Service positions, as well as provide information on the Foreign Service Officer Test. 
Foreign Service presenters will include Dr. Michelle Jones a diplomat-in-residence for the North Central U.S.who serves as a “talent scout” for the U.S. Department of State, visiting career fairs, information sessions and university classrooms. She has served in Poland, Bangladesh, Trinidad, Canada, and most recently in Afghanistan.  Special guest will be Kelly Hunt of Ohio, who was a Public Affairs Officer for the U.S Provincial Reconstruction Team in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

WhenJan. 23 from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
Where: Founders Hall Seminar Room.

More information on the Foreign Service is available at

Interview with Historian Eric Foner

This interview with the Pulitzer prize-winning historian, Eric Foner, in the Atlantic covers a number of topical issues, from MOOCs to what it takes to be a good teacher of history. Here is one thing he says about the latter topic:
The number-one thing is, you have to know history to actually teach it. That seems like an obvious point, but sometimes it's ignored in schools. Even more than that, I think it's important that people who are teaching history do have training in history. A lot of times people have education degrees, which have not actually provided them with a lot of training in the subject. They know a lot about methodology. [That’s] important, but as I say, the key thing is really to love the subject, to be able to convey that to your students, and if you can do that, I think you'll be a great teacher.