The event needs to take on a or speak to a significant “cultural” issue, as defined by the guidelines.
REJECTED: Indiana, a veteran of exciting expeditions, will speak to students about the trialsand issues of becoming an archeologist.
ACCEPTED: Dr. Indiana Jones (Harvard Professor of Archeology) will speak about the role archeology plays in our general understanding of antiquity and will, in the process, dispel myths about the glamour of doing such vital, though often mundane, scholarly work. The proposals also notes that the researcher carries the highest credentials [Ph.D.] in his field)
REJECTED: Remy will show Furman students how to cook food from around the world.
ACCEPTED: Remy, scholar and advocate of French cuisine, will discuss how food intersects with issues of international policy and cultural exchange. After the proposed CLP event is over, students will have the additional option (non-credit-bearing) to sample his food and ask practical advice for cooking—connecting such cultural issues to everyday life. Also note that the event limits its duration, concentrating on cultural learning and otherwise respecting students’ busy schedules.
REJECTED: Beatrix Kiddo will teach a workshop on rape prevention techniques.
ACCEPTED: A panel discussion about rape as a socio-cultural phenomenon will include: Dr. Marie Charles (noted sociologist and columnist on behavioral psychology in relationships), Alexandra Cabot (Assistant District Attorney of New York, assigned to Special Victims Unit), and Beatrix Kiddo (noted expert in martial arts). Note that the panel discussion adds breadth and also gives credentials, with at least some members of the panel having the highest credentials in her area of expertise.
REJECTED: Mitch Martin explains how new fraternities like Alpha Epsilon Omega can do philanthropy while also bolstering membership.
ACCEPTED: In a ten-minute debate, Mitch Martin and Megan Huang will debate the role of Greek organizations versus non-Greek organizations in philanthropy. Then, for the remainder of the event, a panel of experts on the topic of philanthropy will discuss the motivations and potential social rewards of charitable work and giving. A concluding Q&A session will help connect the debate to the panel discussion, giving students a chance to think of the relationship of their current philanthropy with a lifetime of cultural concern and selflessness. Note that the submitter has thought through the significance of each aspect of the event and how it will contribute to the larger goals, beyond campus issues.
REJECTED: Professor Gerald Lambeau will have his students from MATH 411 present their work on “The Cultural Life of Math,” drawn from experiences in their class and laboratory, as a CLP.
ACCEPTED: Professor Gerald Lambeau, MIT Professor of Mathematics, will discuss his research on combinatorialist mathematics in a way that is clear to those outside his field. His student assistants will demonstrate relevant technology and make the applications to Facebook and Twitter understandable to a broader audience. Note that students still can participate in the event, but cannot use their own work as the focus—which is reserved for Furman Engaged and other similar forums; also note that the intellectual accessibility to a broad student audience is made clear.
REJECTED: Students will learn about Catholicism through participating in a Catholic Mass conducted by the sisters of St. Katherine’s, with the music led by Sister Mary Clarence.
ACCEPTED: Students will learn about Catholicism through a repertoire of spiritual music performed by the famous “Choir of St. Katherine’s,” known for innovative approaches to traditional Western church music. Translations of the Latin will be projected onto the wall above the theatre, and comments and printed notes on each song will help contextualize the music and explain its value in the Christian worship. Note that for musical and theatrical performances, such explanations about linguistic barriers and context must be provided.
REJECTED: Attorney Erin Brockovich will advocate for better regulations on industries using toxic chemicals, in her fight to bring donations to The Environmental Defense Fund.
ACCEPTED: Attorney Erin Brockovich will discuss her involvement in the famous Hinkley groundwater contamination case and how this case serves as a poor representative anecdote for other common environmental tragedies. Although Ms. Brockovich is sometimes known for the use of provocative language, she will be briefed on the nature and purpose of the Cultural Life Program. Note how the speaker shows a broader concern than her or his own limited experience or political connections, and how the submitter is forthright about potentially inflammatory issues.
ACCEPTED: Noted journalist Andie Anderson and advertising executive Benjamin Barry will serve on a panel, alongside scholar of communication Dr. Lionel Logue, to discuss how contemporary gimmicks of ethnographic journalism damage the credibility of a press already in transition and potential decline. Note how personal knowledge and experience are related to expertise and a well-documented cultural shift.
REJECTED: Our group plans to show a movie called “Smoking Nation.” The movie speaks for itself, but students can ask questions if they want.
ACCEPTED: “Smoking Nation” will be shown because it demonstrates the vicissitudes of the smoking lobby and industry as an institutional formation. We have invited in Nick Naylor, lobbyist and President of The Academy of Tobacco Studies, to defend the industry and contextualize the film. This will produce an experience that exposes both sides of the argument and should further enlighten students on the issue.Note how the student group included a person with relevant experience n the field of discussion.
REJECTED: FUSAB will host Spinal Tap, a popular heavy metal band, to perform songs with a high degree of cultural value as a truly American genre.
ACCEPTED: In collaboration with the History department, FUSAB will sponsor an evening of dialogue and musical performance with Spinal Tap. Band members will share in a conversation with rock historians about the cultural origins of heavy metal and the profound effects of such music on society in the 1980s. Performances of several pieces will highlight the lyrics and tonality that will be under discussion,and program notes will further explain the group’s discography.
REJECTED: Every season, the Dining Hall hosts a themed meal, and we believe students learn much through the act of eating such culturally-important foods from all over the world. As they move through the dining hall, they might even have conversations with the cooks about the origin of the food. Note that this event has a loose organization and focus.
ACCEPTED: The Dining Hall will be closed for regular business and will sponsor a one-time event, in which students are invited to eat traditional Ethiopian cuisine as a panel presents readings of Ethiopian poetry and folklore that relate to those dishes. Speakers will not only read and perform the literature, but also directly explain the connection to the dishes that are eaten. Students will need to pay $5 for their plate, given FUISA’s inability to budget for food and since the Dining Hall will not cover the costs. Note that the fee here is acceptable given the explanation and the fact that the fee is less than $10.
REJECTED: The truly smart people of campus think that the real bigots ought to know about there ways and think that our speeker, Mr. Archie Bunker, will set them strait. Note that this proposal appears to be written hurriedly, containing spelling and grammatical errors; the tone seems naïve and disrespectful.
ACCEPTED: Given that the Cultural Life Program emerged with the Religion-in-Life series, which explores faith in an ecumenical way, our group will sponsor an interfaithdialogue on bigotry. After all, we all harbor prejudices, given the limits of our personal experiences (Smith, “All Bigots,” 2004, p.3). Creating dialogue in a space of an interfaith community, we hope to overcome some of these damaging aspects of faith and to create an ecclesiastical community more open to and respectful of one another. Note that the desire to a particular persuasive goal in the event is tied to the general orientation of the Cultural Life Program, not a particular political goal or profit.
REJECTED: Barack Obama will speak to campus on November 1, 2012, about the importance of political action and voting. It was such a surprise that he could stop by, as a community organizer himself. The committee will suspect that speaker will bolster his chances for upcoming re-election and feels misled by the submitter.
ACCEPTED: As part of the 2008 Presidential campaigns, the debate between Senator Barack Obama and Senator John McCain will occur at Furman University. Despite the unusual timing over Fall Break, we believe that students should not miss this important cultural event. Speakers will speak broadly to issues of the economy, the military, and social issues such as gay marriage and abortion. Although this scope is wide, their important status as Presidential candidates ought to permit this latitude of cultural learning and students ought to be civically engaged enough to be aware of these important national conversations.Note how the submitter explains accessibility for students, regarding location and time, as well as content and unspecified broadness of the debates.
The event is truly an ” event” that cannot easily be reproduced, through performance and/or audience participation. Attention should be shared and not focused on one particular medium.
Proposals should be well-written, with a tone that respects difference of opinion on the matter. Proposals do not try to mislead the committee.
Can’t find an example that seems to fit? Email CLP at CLP@furman.edu for more info!