Spotlight on Arts and Sciences Stars: The 2017 College Showcase
On Tuesday, May 16, SCU students, faculty, and staff filled the de Saisset Museum to participate in the annual College Showcase hosted by the College of Arts and Sciences. The Showcase this year helped emphasize, as Dean Debbie Tahmassebi explained, “a focus on teaching innovation, faculty scholarship and creative work, faculty-mentored student scholarship and creative work, and student-faculty collaboration.”
Junior Chonsa Schmidt, who was at the Environment Studies & Sciences table, appreciated the variety of innovations SCU has to offer. “It’s so great to see all the different departments. It’s a clear snapshot of what we’re trying to do—there are lots of community-based projects which I think really exemplifies what SCU is all about. We’ve got a wide range of topics and interests but we are all trying to help.”
The large crowd during the opening reception was drawn to learning from all the tables—but some of the newer innovations on campus particularly attracted people’s attention. For example, guests could experience Virtual Reality as well as learn about the display of student 3-D artwork, both now taught in the new “Imaginarium.” Others were drawn to the table of Digital Humanities projects. With more than twenty-five tables, ranging from displays about Mathematics & Computer Science to Theatre & Dance, there was a topic sure to attract everyone’s interest.
For the students involved, these projects often reflected a way to extend their learning beyond the classroom. Junior Shawna Richardson, presenting at the Child Studies table, was passionate about her topic: the Resilient Families Project. This collaboration with Sacred Heart Community Service offers classes for immigrant mothers to learn how to enhance cognitive development as they also increase parent-child attachment. “I’ve been with the program for two or two and a half years,” Richardson explained. “I’ve appreciated having this chance for human interaction. We do lots of research but then we get to really enjoy working directly with these kids and moms.” Her tablemate, Kathryn Franke ‘18 couldn’t agree more: “It’s so great to take what we learn in the classroom and apply it to the community and real life situations.”
While the Showcase highlights the year’s main accomplishments in the Arts and Sciences, it’s clear that, as Dean Tahmassebi remarked, at Santa Clara, “[we are] transforming our world through the Curiosity, Innovation, and Passion of our faculty and students.”