Swarthmore College

The Aydelotte Foundation’s Higher Ed Reading Group assembles faculty, staff, and students to read and discuss topics relevant to the liberal arts and higher education. If there is a topic or a particular text you’d like to read with the group, please contact Andy Hines, Senior Associate Director (ahines1@swarthmore.edu). Readings should be brief and engaging to encourage participation.

Rather than an overarching theme, the reading group organizes around “micro-topics,” that is, one or two meetings on a specific area of inquiry.

Upcoming Meetings

“Higher Education and Mental Health”
with Tim Burke (History)

12pm-1pm, Thursday, January 26th, 2023: This session will continue our conversation from last year on the present and past state of mental health services on college campuses. We will read “Crisis on Campus: Mental Health Counselors Are Feeling the Crush,” a recent essay by Amy Bioncolli.

Those who register here will be sent the Zoom link for the session. The reading and topic for this session were curated by Tim Burke (History) and Dawn Philip (CAPS).

Past Meetings

“Higher Education and Mental Health”
with Tim Burke (History)

This session focused on attempts within academia to construct institutional services and responses to deal with the mental health of students, largely conceptualized in terms of “mental hygiene”, between 1910 and 1950, and on attempts after 1950 to recall and consider that history.

“Bioethics, Urban Development, and Institutional Responsibility”
with Dawn Carone (Biology) and Andy Hines (Aydelotte)

This session explored how the story of Henrietta Lacks underlines the complex entanglement of bioethics and the racialized urban geography, which hospitals and universities play a key role in shaping.

The discussion connected to several events on campus in October 2021:

  1. the Cooper Series events with Rebecca Skloot and the Lacks Family
  2. in the Aydelotte Foundation’s Race, Racism, and Liberal Arts series, a conversation with Krystal Tsosie and Tao Leigh Goffe on developing projects and programs that address historic and present violence with respect to race, indigeneity, and science and technology
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