Fairfield University's 'One Day University' to feature dream team of Ivy League faculty


On Saturday, June 23, University College at Fairfield University will present One Day University, a daylong educational event that will feature a distinguished group of faculty from Harvard, Brown, Dartmouth and Columbia tackling hot button topics as diverse as President George W. Bush's wartime practices, the use of brain scans in court, the effect of immigrants on Americans' wallets, and the power of positive thinking.

Edna F. Wilson, dean of University College, explained that the June 23 event is the first of many One Day University programs at Fairfield. "The mission of One Day University mirrors that of University College in that we both seek to foster a love of lifelong learning. We both encourage people to rediscover the joy of learning. These events will help participants to exercise their minds and enrich their intellects."

Steven Schragis, a One Day University administrator, said the event will bring together some of the most popular and award-winning faculty members from Ivy League institutions and other top tier universities. "It's the equivalent of The Rolling Stones of professors coming to your town. They will speak at Fairfield on the course subjects that have made them a big hit on their respective campuses."

One Day University, a New York-based educational company, partners with universities throughout the country to present these events, which allow for people of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy stimulating discussion on important topics. Participants learn the latest thinking in psychology, economics, the law and political science, among many other subjects.

The schedule is as follows:

  • "Psychology: Positive Psychology and the Science of Happiness," 9:30 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Shawn Achor, an instructor at Harvard University, is the teacher. The Harvard Crimson, Harvard's daily newspaper, calls this course the most popular at the University. Achor has taken his research into rhetoric, religion and ethics into the field of psychology to develop this course, which examines self-esteem, spirituality, empathy and setting goals, among other issues. Achor's interest in positive psychology is a ramification of his work as a Harvard freshman advisor. He discovered that many young people have suffered, at one time or another, from depression while undergraduates.
  • "Economics: Fear, Myth, Reality and the Economics of Immigration," 10:50 a.m. to 12:05 p.m. The teacher is Rachel Friedberg, Ph.D., a senior lecturer in economics at Brown University who earned a doctorate in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She will explore whether the welcome mat for immigrants has worn thin. Issues to be discussed include whether the United States allows immigrants in because of or despite the economic impact that they have on the country. She will talk about the debate over whether illegal immigrants are taking away jobs from American-born workers.
  • Lunch, 12:05 p.m. to 1 p.m.
  • "Legal Studies: Neuroscience, Genetics, and Brain Scans on Trial," 1 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Ph.D., professor of philosophy and legal studies at Dartmouth College. This course will delve into the controversial practice of how attorneys are referring to neuroscience and brain scans to argue their cases. Participants will learn how criminal defendants are using a ‘No Lie MRI' brain scan to try to prove their innocence. During the 2005-2006 school year, Dr. Sinnott-Armstrong, who earned a doctorate in philosophy from Yale University, was the Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Professor for Distinguished Teaching at Princeton University
  • "Political Science: George W. Bush: The Imperial President?" 2:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. Richard Pious, Ph.D., professor of political science at Barnard College and Columbia University, will weigh in on whether President Bush has simply asserted his power like any other wartime president or positioned himself above the law. Classroom topics include war powers, warrantless wiretapping, domestic spying and military tribunals in regards to Guantanamo detainees. Dr. Pious, who earned a doctorate in political science from Columbia, has advised foreign governments on American policy and Congress on the War Powers Act of 1973

Classes take place at the Quick Center for the Arts on the Fairfield campus, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. The cost is $219 and lunch is provided. To register, please visit www.onedayu.com.

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on May 24, 2007

Vol. 39, No. 233