'Huddle with the Faculty' offers timely talks before home football games

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- On fall football Saturdays, alumni and friends can learn about timely topics by the best and brightest at Penn State. This year’s free Huddle with the Faculty lectures will feature such wide-ranging topics as the accomplishments of Penn State’s early presidents, the role of satire in democracy and the health of polar ice sheets.

Now in its 21st year, Huddle with the Faculty kicks off this Saturday before the Eastern Michigan game with “Evan Pugh and George Atherton: Penn State’s George Washington and Abraham Lincoln,” featuring Roger L. Williams, '73, '75g, '88g, executive director of the Penn State Alumni Association and affiliate associate professor of higher education.

Just as George Washington set the precedents and standards for U.S. presidency and Abraham Lincoln reconciled the nation to its original lofty purpose so too did founding President Evan Pugh (1859-64) and seventh president George Atherton (1882-1906) accomplish similar ends for Penn State. Pugh came with a grand vision for Penn State and a focus on introducing the fledgling field of agricultural science into American higher education. Eighteen years later, Atherton arrived and brought a failing Penn State into alignment with the Morrill Land-Grant Act of 1862, and set the stage for the University’s growth and success in the 20th century.

All seven Huddle with the Faculty programs start promptly at 9 a.m. in the Nittany Lion Inn and include light breakfast refreshments, beginning at 8:30 a.m., and free parking in the Nittany Lion Parking Deck. 

Huddle with the Faculty is presented by the Penn State Alumni Association and sponsored by The Village at Penn State, with support from the Nittany Lion Inn and Penn State Press.

Read a recent AlumnInsider article about Huddle with the Faculty.

The six other programs this fall are:

Sept. 14 (Central Florida): “Can Satire Save Democracy? The Story of Stephen Colbert”
Sophia McClennen, professor of international affairs and comparative literature
In the last two general elections, comedians have played a bigger and bigger role in influencing voter perceptions of political issues. Is the rise of satire good or bad for our democracy? Hear the story of Stephen Colbert and see what you think.

Sept. 21 (Kent State): “Polar Ice: An Update on the State of Antarctica and Greenland”
Sridhar Anandakrishnan, professor of geosciences
Greenland and Antarctica may seem distant, but in fact they are as close as the Jersey Shore (not the town, the actual shore). What happens to the ice sheets at the Poles affects the global sea level, and what we do in our homes affects the health of the ice sheets. Anandakrishnan will discuss the state of the research, show some pictures and answer questions.

Oct. 12 (Michigan-Homecoming): “Forever Young: The Aging Athlete”
Matthew Silvis, ’02, associate professor in family and community medicine and orthopedics and rehabilitation at the Penn State College of Medicine and medical director for primary care sports medicine at the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
Exercise is often not emphasized in conversations between aging patients and their health care providers. However, there are numerous benefits to exercise for persons of all ages. This talk focuses on the benefits of exercise throughout life and provides common exercise recommendations for older adults.

Nov. 2 (Illinois): “Educating Global Citizens: A Penn State Model”
Verónica Montecinos, professor of sociology at Penn State Greater Allegheny
Experimenting with various models of global education is crucial to satisfy the high demand generated in recent decades. This talk will focus on a successful model of curriculum internationalization, which was developed at Penn State Greater Allegheny and has the potential for being adopted at other educational institutions.

Nov. 16 (Purdue): “Protecting Children from Abuse: From the Frontlines”
Benjamin Levi, professor of pediatrics and humanities at the Penn State College of Medicine and director of the Penn State Center for the Protection of Children
Learn about the creation and development of the Penn State Hershey Center for the Protection of Children. Consider research findings about decision-making with regard to reporting suspected abuse and determining that abuse occurred, and discuss some of the ethical and practical challenges that arise in efforts to protect children from abuse.

Nov. 23 (Nebraska): “Travel Becomes You”
Deborah Kerstetter, professor of recreation, park and tourism management
Consider the travel experiences that have made you feel good, brought you closer to friends and family, or given meaning to your life. Kerstetter will discuss the benefits individuals have accrued through their involvement in leisure activities, including travel. She’ll share the results of projects she has conducted in the U.S. and Europe.

See the complete Huddle with the Faculty schedule and additional events at alumni.psu.edu/events.

Last Updated November 01, 2013