W&J’s Inaugural Symposium on Democracy

Throughout the week of Feb. 12, Washington & Jefferson College had the pleasure of hosting its inaugural Symposium on Democracy. Composed of a series of lectures and events, the symposium will encourage community and school participation in learning about and exploring democracy not only in our country but also worldwide. The event will be led by internationally- renowned experts in the field of democracy, who will cover a range of topics in the five different talks occurring throughout the week.

The first event occurred on Monday, Feb. 12 at 6:30 p.m. in the Allen Ballroom of the Rossin Campus Center and featured both student and faculty presentations on democracy. Titled “Democracy on the World Stage,” students Carmen Carroll ’19, Jordan Hosfelt ’19, Caden Meier ’19, Harley Moyer ’19, Abigail Peace ’19, Katie Prinkey ’18, and Jonathan Weese ’19 shared their international experiences of studying issues of democracy. This served as the “kickoff” event to the week-long symposium. On Tuesday, Feb. 13, global executive director of the Caux Round Table for Moral Capitalism, Stephen B. Young, gave a lecture called “Can American Democracy Survive Without a Thriving Middle Class?” The lecture took place at 6:30 p.m. in the Allen Ballroom. The next lecture, titled “The Foundations of American Democracy: 1776-1865,” took place on Wednesday, Feb. 14. Richard Cardawine, professor of American History and former President of the Corpus Christi College, Oxford, delivered the lecture at 6:30p.m. in the Olin Fine Arts Center. The final day of the symposium, Thursday, Feb. 15, featured two events. The first event took place at 12:30 p.m. in the Allen ballroom of the Rossin Campus Center. The event was titled “Lunch and Learn with Richard Cardawine.” At this lunch, participants discussed Cardawine’s book, “Lincoln’s Sense of Humor” as an interactive group. The second event of the day took place at 6:30 p.m. in the Allen Ballroom. This event was a panel discussion titled “The Legacies of Washington and Jefferson: 21st Century Perspectives.”

All of the events were open-to-the-public, non-ticketed and free. The event was a great experience for those who wished to learn more about democracy around the world.