As seen in Compass:
Wealth and Poverty theme week to examine challenges, developments in Appalachia
Mar 25, 2015
By McKenzie Powell
[dropcap]O[/dropcap]hio University’s College of Arts and Sciences is gearing up for its first-ever weeklong series of events tied to the curricular theme of “Wealth and Poverty” with a focus on the Appalachian region.
Featuring lectures, a documentary screening, research talks and exhibits, the “Wealth and Poverty in Appalachia” events will be held Monday, April 6, through Friday, April 10, at various locations on the Athens Campus. All events are free and open to the public.
Ohio University, under the leadership of the College of Arts and Sciences and with funding from the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, began implementing themes in its curriculum in the fall of 2014. The themes were created as an innovative pathway through the University’s general education and/or college requirements, allowing students to fulfill those requirements while also taking courses that help them understand an issue of particular interest to them.
Today, the University offers more than 10 curricular themes, ranging from “Food Studies,” which explores food production, consumption and meaning and the role food plays in social, political, cultural and economic realities, to “Fire to iPhone,” which examines the evolution of key technologies throughout human history and how those technologies have shaped and continue to shape society.
The “Wealth and Poverty” theme features courses designed to help students understand, from a variety of disciplines and perspectives, why there is inequality in the world. The upcoming “Wealth and Poverty in Appalachia” series was created to bring OHIO faculty and students as well as members of the surrounding community together to discuss and explore poverty and inequality in the Appalachian region.
This week of events will focus on raising awareness and understanding of the socioeconomic, health and historical challenges and developments within Appalachia through the use of interdisciplinary lectures and experiences. Discussions will range from African-American experiences in Appalachia to mathematical education in rural Appalachia.
“It’s all about student-oriented activities and having exposure,” Yeong-Hyun Kim, associate professor of urban/economic geography and coordinator of the “Wealth and Poverty” theme, said of the upcoming events. “Having physical exposure to Appalachia outside of books and classes is very important.”
In a lead-up to the weeklong events, OHIO students will explore the economic and cultural past and present of the local region with a special field trip to several locations in and around Athens County. That trip, scheduled for March 28, is being led by Barry Tadlock, associate professor of political science.
“The goal of the trip is to help those connected to the Wealth and Poverty theme better understand historical aspects of how wealth is distributed in Appalachian Ohio and also contemporary efforts to address the inequalities that have arisen over the years,” Tadlock explained.
Stops on the trip will include:
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