Inaugural Colby Summer Institute a Great Success
Last August, the Center for the Arts and Humanities held our first ever Summer Institute in the Environmental Humanities. This week-long series of lectures, seminars, workshops, and field trips, brought together 28 academics from as far afield as Australia and as close to home as Colby itself. Its goal was to foster connections between scholars within the growing field of Environmental Humanities, prompting discussion and collaboration. The fruit of a year of planning, and possible due to a generous grant from the Mellon Foundation, the Summer Institute featured three guest lecturers: English Professor Stephanie LeMenager of the University of Oregon, Philosophy Professor Kyle Whyte of Michigan State University, and Art History Professor Amanda Boetzkes of the University of Guelph, in Ontario, Canada. Each lecturer presented the Institute participants with their unique research projects and perspectives, sharing their ideas and inspiring future research.
The Summer Institute was planned by Center for the Arts and Humanities Director Kerill O’Neill, Postdoctoral Fellow in the Environmental Humanities Christopher Walker, EH Faculty Seminar Leader and Professor of Philosophy Keith Peterson, and EH Program Coordinator Ayla Fudala.
To read more about the details of the inaugural Summer Institute, and to see more photos, please click here.
Reviews of the Inaugural Summer Institute by Participants
Samia Rahimtoola, Assistant Professor of English at Bowdoin University: “Thanks so much for an absolutely stellar experience at Colby….It was by far among the best academic experiences I have had.”
Beatriz Urraca, Professor of Spanish at Widener University: “A fantastic, enriching experience. An opportunity to focus on thinking, connecting ideas, collaborating with like-minded scholars.”
Michael Putnam, Religious Studies PhD at Brown University: “The Summer Institute was, by far and without question, one of the best academic events that I have attended. It was superbly organized and immensely valuable to my own research, but it also fostered real community among the participants. A few weeks out, and I’m still a little sad it’s over! I will be recommending that others apply in the future.”
Salma Monani, Professor of Environmental Studies at Gettysburg University: “I really enjoyed how cutting edge and yet publicly engaged the focus of the institute became.”
Anthony Lioi, Associate Professor of English at the Juiliard School: “Totally awesome. Really jump-started several writing/editing projects. It felt like a truly interdisciplinary space.”
Stephen Siperstein, PhD, High School Environmental Education Instructor at Choate Rosemary Hall: “I thought the Summer Institute was fantastic, and it is so important to model the kinds of communities (maybe even micro-utopias?) we want to build in the future, both in the EH and beyond.”
Rachel Fetherstone, Literary Studies PhD at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia: “Fantastic and incredibly valuable…I am so glad that I was able to attend and am excited to continue to connect with those I met and put into action the ideas that were generated through our discussions.”