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Weatherhead Roundtables

Each semester, a number of relatively informal informational events, known as Roundtables, are hosted in Weatherhead Hall, the sophomore Honors community.  These events include professors presenting on their research or areas of interest, as well as panels of students recounting their experiences writing Honors Theses or in other areas.  This is an integral part of building an intellectual community within Weatherhead and across campus.

Students gather in the Weatherhead Lobby to hear Professor Akin talk about the current situation in Turkey.

Fall 2018


11/26 – "History in the News: My Fascism is Better Than Your Fascism" Assistant History Professors Felipe Cruz, Subah Dayal, and Andy Horowitz spoke about the rise of Fascism around the world and how it is perceived throughout different countries including Brazil, India, Pakistan, and the United States.

10/29 – "We Can Do Better: Health Care Reform in America" Professor Mollye Demosthenidy, Clinical Associate Professor in the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, spoke about the challenges of and opportunities for health care reform in America.

10/3 – "History in the News: The Past, Present, and Future of Abortion in Louisiana" Professor Karissa Haugeberg, Assistant Professor in History, discussed the history of reproductive politics in the state of Louisiana. 

9/18 – “Of Notes and Neurons: My Passion for Creativity” Dr. Michael Moore, the Weatherhead Faculty in Residence and Professor in Biomedical Engineering, welcomed the Honors community to the first Roundtable of the year, discussing his experience with following his "passion"- creativity, his own personal take on the creative process, and his thoughts on following one's passion.

Academic Year 2017-2018


4/11 – “Panel on Graduate School and Competitive Scholarship Applications” Honors program representatives and fellow student panelists from a range of academic disciplines addressed interests and questions related to the processes of applying to graduate schools and competitive scholarships. Panelists spoke about the resources and skills that they used while applying to programs and reflect upon their experiences in the process. Students learned to apply and get accepted into the graduate programs and nationally competitive scholarships of their choice.

3/22 – “Honors RLC Roundtable- "Generosity Cures Anger": The Passions of the Soul by René Descartes” Professor April Olsen, Instructor in Philosophy, spoke at this Roundtable Discussion, and students shared their thoughts on what it means to cure anger. Do we all deserve forgiveness? What does it mean to be generous?

3/8 – “Brexit: A European Horizons Roundtable” Professor Mark Vail, of the Tulane Political Science Department, led this talk entitled "Brexit, Economic Citizenship, and the Political Perils of Neoliberalism."  It was a fascinating discussion of the causes and trends leading to Brexit. 

2/28 – “Navigating Academic Life: Why Do I Hate My Classes and How Can I Find My Niche?” Do you feel a bit disinterested in your classes? Do you find yourself daydreaming about topics not related your major? Or perhaps you outright dislike your classes? These feelings and experiences are pretty common, but how do we go about responding to them? Dr. Michael J. Moore, Weatherhead Faculty-in-Residence and Professor in Biomedical Engineering, the Career and Academic Advising Centers, and students shared their own thoughts and experiences about "finding their academic niche."

2/27 – “Narrations of Home Across Europe's Borders: Fifteen Years On--A European Horizons Roundtable” Professor Raymond Taras of the Political Science department led a roundtable on the ongoing east-west divide in the EU. Professor Taras addressed the differing visions of Europe advanced by elites and masses in east and west, and argued that the vision of the west has been imposed on the east, fueling a backlash.

11/15 - “History in the News: Medieval History Weaponized” Dr. Tom Luongo, Associate Professor of History, led a discussion of the appropriation of medieval imagery by the modern far right.  He explored the reasons behind this appropriation, and the possible reactions of scholars of medieval history, such as himself.

10/30 -  “How Do We Change the Campus Culture?”  Professor Tania Tetlow, Tulane's Senior Vice President and Chief of Staff, discussed efforts to change the Tulane campus culture surrounding sexual violence and alcohol.

10/3 - “Design Thinking and Making from the Ground up” Professor Marianne Desmarais, Professor of Practice in the School of Architecture, covered the design process as practiced by Tulane's Taylor Center, and the reciprocal relationship between the space and its occupants as broadly collaborative.

9/21 - “Of Notes and Neurons: My Passion for Creativity” Dr. Michael Moore, Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Faculty-in-Residence in Weatherhead Hall, discussed his creative process, and the relationship between his day job and his hobby- music composition.

9/19 - “History in the News:  Why is Turkey in the News?” Professor Yigit Akin and Professor Kenneth Harl hosted a conversation on the situation in Turkey and why it matters.  They traced the trajectory of a country moving rapidly away from democracy.

Academic Year 2016-2017


4/25 - "Archeological Chemistry: Using Orgo to Better Understand our Past," Dr. Scott Grayson discussed how integrating chemistry and archeology can help bring history to life, reveling new findings and providing new details. 

4/11 – “Socratic Education Within the Cave of Public Opinion,” Instructor April Olsen discussed the way students and citizens should approach nature of truth and reality in the context of modern Public Opinion.

4/6 – “Honors Thesis Panel,” The Honors Program and Faculty and Residence Dr. Michael Moore hosted a panel of current thesis writers who talked about the opportunities and challenges of writing an Honors Thesis. Students representing different departments discussed getting started with the process (regardless of major), identifying faculty members for a committee and writing a prospectus.

3/22 – “Immigration: Perspectives from Central and South America,” Dr. Justin Wolfe and Dr. Felipe Cruz, as part of the continuing History in the News series, presented on the current immigration debate from the perspectives in Central and South America.

3/15 – “Fear Campaigns: Do They Really Work,” Dr. Elizabeth Glecker presented on the issue of fear campaigns as related to controversial issues and in the context of the recent election.

3/8 – “Better Living through Acting - How Acting Can Prepare You for Your Future Career,” Dr. Carl Walker, of the Department of Theater and Dance, presented on the usefulness of acting as a skill and the ways it can be a positive influence in life.

2/21 – “Navigating Academic Life: What Am I Supposed to be Getting Out of My Education Anyway?” Dr. Michael Moore hosted a panel discussion of recent graduate, career services and alumni and explore the long term implications of academic life. In this discussion, panelists reflected on what they have gleaned from their experiences and what they wish they had known when they were still in college.

2/7 – “Disability in the Workplace: Creating an Equal Playing Field,” Dr. Adrienne Colella presented on current issues of disability discrimination in the workplace, as well as ways to move forward.

12/6 – “Honors Thesis Panel,” A group of current Honor Thesis writers answered talk about their research and answer questions about writing and the process. Moderated by William Gillispie, with Jamie Logan, Robert Kellner, Maggie Zhang, Annika White, Jessica Conrad.

11/30 – "How Neoliberalism Feeds Nationalism in the EU: an Honors Roundtable," Dr. Mark Vail, in the last Roundtable of the semester, explored the history of Neoliberalism and its effect on the growth of nationalism in Europe. Dr. Vail started by defining Neoliberalism as he saw it before developing his argument.

11/15 – “Finding Research Opportunities: Insider Tips Revealed,” Dr. Michael Moore moderated a discussion of a panel of students who have participated in summer research at and beyond Tulane in various subject areas.

11/1 – “2016 US Election: International Perspectives,” Dr. Brian DeMare, Dr. Marline Otte and Dr. Samuel Ramer, as part of the History in the News series, presented on the 2016 election from non-US elections. Dr. DeMare talked about the Chinese response, Dr. Ramer discussed Russian controversy and interests, and Dr. Otte considered the wider European reaction.

10/27 – “How Bourbon Street Happened,” Dr. Richard Campenella, of the School of Architecture, presented on the history of Bourbon Street within an urban geographical context.

10/20 – “Navigating Academic Life: How Can Healthy Choices Improve Your Grades?” Dr. Michael Moore, Dr. Gary Dohanich and Dr. Scott Time participated in a panel discussion on how living healthy can improve academics and grades. They also gave tips on how one can live healthy while still keeping up with demanding, academic life of college. The panel considered if a healthy body truly leads to a healthy mind.

9/27 - “Beach Bodies: The French 'Burkini' Ban in Historical Context,” Dr. Kathryn Edwards of the Department of History, as part of the History in the News series, presented on the current controversy over the “Burkini Ban” in France.

9/22 - “Of Notes, Narratives, and Neurons: My Take on the Creative Process,” Dr. Michael Moore, Department of Biomedical Engineering and Faculty in Residence at Weatherhead Hall, discussed the peculiar intersection of two seemingly divergent aspects of his life: his research into the central nervous system, and his personal hobbies for musicianship, composition, and creative writing, and how they influence and complement each other.