Liberal Arts Celebrates 125 Years

Highlighter & Laureate, Summer 2002 issue

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As the University of Detroit Mercy celebrates 125 years of Jesuit tradition, the College of Liberal Arts is also commemorating its 125th anniversary. The College shares its founding with what was then Detroit College (later the University of Detroit and University of Detroit Mercy) in 1877 by the Rt. Rev. Caspar H. Borgess, D.D., Bishop of Detroit. The institution was dedicated to providing a liberal education grounded in humanities and classical languages. As Detroit College expanded into a university that included additional disciplines, liberal studies remained its foundational curriculum. Today, though, the College of Liberal Arts offers many individual degree programs, it still provides the required core curriculum courses through which all UDM students receive a well-rounded education. This foundation remains one of the University's hallmarks.

Several activities are currently being planned to help the College, its students and alumni honor this impressive milestone.

Ask the Professor, the University's radio trivia program, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. To commemorate this event, WJR-AM radio will air a special broadcast of the show on October 27. WJR, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary, was the original station to broadcast "Ask the Professor" in 1952. Throughout its 50-year history, the show has been syndicated on 30 stations across the country and continues to air on seven stations, including local stations WCSX 94.7FM on Sundays at 6 a.m and WMGC 105.1FM on Saturdays at 6 a.m.

The anniversary broadcast will return many of the program's original hosts, such as Edwin DeWindt, Sarah Stever and Fred Hayes. The first of a two-hour broadcast will be the regular quiz show with the current and former panelists answering questions primarily about UDM's history. The second hour will feature a montage of clips from the show's past 50 years. A portion of the clipshow will honor the late Professor of Religious Studies George Pickering, who was a panelist on the show for nearly 20 years.

Also in the works is an important opportunity for students to write articles in January 2003 for the Detroit Free Press. The articles may focus on the University of Detroit Mercy's history or feature graduates who have made their mark on business and industry. The articles will be part of a series the Free Press will run on Michigan history.

The College will also tie its anniversary in with some ongoing events. The annual lecture series will be dedicated to the anniversary, as will the bi-annual Arthur F. McGovern, S.J., Golf Outing.

The College will also invite alumni back to campus for the grand opening of the newly-moved and revised Communication Studies Program and to participate with students in the Ethics Bowl. The Ethics Bowl, inspired by TV's College Bowl, started through the Philosophy Department two years ago as a way for UDM students to exercise their ethical views on a variety of topics, including classroom issues, personal relationships and professional, political and social ethics.

More information on these and other anniversary events will be made available through alumni e-connect and on the College of Liberal Arts web site.

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