This issue of Perspectives takes readers on a tour of the various spaces occupied
by the College of Humanities. Each space offers a unique point of entry to the college
and collectively underscore the evolving role of the humanities on the U campus and
in the community. Read the Issue
Comm 3520 explores radio journalism and exposes students to news writing, reporting,
covering a beat, interviewing sources and producing news for broadcast.
Doug Bowser, President of Nintendo of America, majored in the humanities at the University
of Utah knowing the skills he would obtain – writing, communication, creative thinking
and problem solving – would benefit him in any career path. Click Here to Watch
Our Commitment to Inclusivity
Click below to read our Commitment on Inclusivity Statement.
The humanities teach us to question the world around us in order to better understand
our place within it. In the humanities, we seek to understand the nuances of cultural
issues, to interpret human experience, and to appreciate the power of words and ideas.
By studying humanities, we broaden our historical, ethical, social and international
perspectives while enhancing ourselves intellectually and creatively.
Gregory Smoak, associate professor of history and director of the American West Center, was recently on KUER’s Radiowest discussing agriculture, water policy and the Great Salt Lake. Smoak joined guests Joel Ferry, executive director of the Utah Department of Natural Resources and farmers from Box Elder County.
Andy King, associate professor of communication, was recently interviewed on Marketplace Tech about how technology, specifically photos, memes and video, can easily spread misinformation.
“The way that people process visual content generally is different than how they process verbal content. And so, for visual misinformation, people will process it differently, they’ll be able to access it differently and how they integrate that information into their existing mental models of how the world works will be affected differently...”
The John R. Park Debate Society continued its Spring 2023 season with a small contingent of competitors at the Jannese Davidson Memorial Tournament hosted by Concordia University-Irvine. Over the weekend, members of the Debate Society competed against 28 colleges and universities from eight states, including Bradley University, George Mason University, San Diego State University, the University of California at Berkley, and Point Loma Nazarene University. For their efforts, competitors competed in elimination rounds in 12 events, and every member of the team brought home an award. Senior Ryan Knippel also won the Ninja-Pixie Individual Sweepstakes Award, given to the student who earns the most points across debate and individual events. The Debate Society will continue its season on February 4-5 at the Gaske Memorial Invitational hosted by San Diego State University.
The John R. Park Debate Society opened its Spring 2023 competitive season at home by hosting the Great Salt Lake Invitational and the UTEP Classic with tournament cohosts, the University of Texas-El Paso. The "swing" tournament allows schools attending to compete in two tournaments on the same weekend, doubling opportunities for students.
More than a decade ago, Natalie Stillman-Webb, writing and rhetoric studies professor/lecturer at the University of Utah, was paying for her children’s tennis lessons when the front desk attendant said he recognized her name from an online class he had taken the previous semester. After asking the young man’s name, she remembered an excellent paper he had written and commented on it. However, he was confused. He knew he had seen her name before but did not realize that the robot he thought ran his online class was a living, breathing member of the university faculty.
Reactionary politics and climate change are connected. At the dawn of 2023 that connection may seem obscure, but ongoing droughts, mega-storms and displaced people will aggravate America’s existing political tensions.
We have accomplished a great deal in Fall 2022! As we head toward the holidays and a second appearance in the Rose Bowl (yay!), I want to note and celebrate a few items.
We’ve added several excellent new members to the College of Humanities Dean’s office team, including Karen Marsh, Director of Student Success and Engagement, who will lead initiatives to provide staff, departments, and the advising team with new tools to ensure we have successful and engaged students; Cameron Vakilian, Director of Advising, Outreach, and Experiential Learning; and Missy Weeks, Marketing Specialist for the Tanner Humanities Center.
Cameron Vakilian has accepted the position of director of advising, outreach, and experiential learning for the University of Utah’s College of Humanities and will begin January 1. Vakilian will work in conjunction with the college’s new director for student success and engagement, Karen Marsh Schaeffer. In this new role, Vakilian will provide support to the advising community across the college’s departments and programs and will support and innovate the college’s effort to attract new students to the humanities and connect them with world-class learning opportunities.