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The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

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What to Expect from Celebrate the Humanities

Celebrate the Humanities is on Friday, Sept. 29. Here’s why you should attend.
Rory Durso

On Sept. 29, the Center for the Humanities will be hosting Celebrate the Humanities to honor the achievements of professors and students in the humanities.

This year, Dr. David Carey from the History Department will receive the Nachbar Award for Outstanding Scholarly Achievement in the Humanities. He will deliver the 2023 Nachbar Address, “Activism, Humility and Collaboration in a Life of the Mind.”

Previously called “The Big Dig,” Celebrate the Humanities showcases how students and professors of the disciplines apply their areas of expertise to experiences outside the classroom. Along with the awards professors will receive, winners of the student summer opportunities sponsored by the center will give oral presentations summarizing their accomplishments.

Picture courtesy of Rory Durso

Dr. Martin Camper, Associate Professor of Writing, has served as director for the Center for the Humanities since 2021. He hopes that the event will amplify what is available to students and professors in the humanities.

“I think people don’t know that there’s all this money that we’re trying to give away so that students and faculty can do really cool and important work,” Camper said.

The Humanities Department includes the disciplines of english, writing, philosophy, classics, theology, and history. Every summer, the Center for the Humanities offers stipends for summer internships for students, as well as funding for other academic programs and undergoing projects supervised by a professor. The Center also sponsors various events that bring writers and other professionals to speak at Loyola. Camper emphasizes the value of a humanities degree. 

“What makes the humanities special is the fact that we are looking at the human person in all of its complexity. What I love about the humanities at Loyola is we have all these different disciplines that are all offering different lenses on the perennial questions that face human beings,” he said. “I wanted to lead so that I could promote and advance the humanities to everyone on campus.”

Also presenting at the event are students who attended the new pilot program the Center introduced this summer. The Center for the Humanities sent a group of students and faculty to the University of Victoria to participate in the Digital Humanities Summer Institute. Camper believes that it is a valuable opportunity for students and faculty.

“They get to pick up new skills, learn how to apply digital tools to research that they are already doing and then you also get to know each other as a cohort and make some connections with people from other universities,” he said.

Picture courtesy of Rory Durso

The event will also honor Teaching Professor Dr. Andrea Leary from the Writing Department with the 2023 Teaching Faculty Excellence Award. She echoes Camper’s sentiments about how the humanities can help us understand the intricacies of people. A Teaching Professor of Writing since 1994, she credits her Jesuit education at College of the Holy Cross for her continued interest in teaching cura personalis to her students. 

“Having gone to Holy Cross with the same mission [as Loyola], I always wanted to be in a place with that mission. Having the opportunity to come to Loyola has been an incredible gift for me. I really feel like it’s helped me to be the kind of person I want to be in the world,” she said. 

Leary teaches most of her courses as Service-Learning opportunities, which is where she sees the most value in her teaching career. She also hosts two events every year: a showing of the film “Becoming Bulletproof” and “One Question,” an opportunity for students to ask people with disabilities about their lives. The most important part about teaching for her, however, is who her students become.

 “I’m hoping that I can play a role in serving my students in reaching their potential so that they know the power of their voice and that they can serve with their voices with the community. When that opportunity is available, I think that it can make something greater than each of us individually happen,” Leary said. 

Humanities students are encouraged to attend the event on Sept. 29 from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at the Fourth Floor Programming Room in the Student Center. 

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