Mini-Courses
Courses are offered to community members to enhance their knowledge and to help teachers meet their professional development requirements.

 

  • Teachers receive 3 hours of professional development per session, 15 for attendance at all 5 sessions of the series.

  • The courses are $25 each or you may become a member of the Center for $50 and take unlimited courses September 1 to August 31. (Review our refund policy here.)

  • To become a member, download a pdf of the registration form to mail in or call 856-227-7200, ext. 4333.

  • To register for a Mini-Course, download a pdf of the Mini-Course Registration Form  and return the Center for Civic Leadership and Responsibility
    Connector Building, Room 103
    Blackwood Campus
    200 College Drive
    Blackwood, NJ 08012

 



Spring Courses 2015


 

The Hitler Phenomenon
One Percent Better: An Introduction to Nutrition and Fitness Basics Image
Opera-Passion, Politics, and Power
Marching Through Old Dominion: Battle Ground Virginia
Discovering New Worlds
The Seventies: Decade of Doubt
Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics
The Gothic Tradition in English and American Literature  
"The Shock of Rock": The Fight for the Souls of Our Youth, 1950-1970
African American Women Writers: the forgotten souls, big voices of the Harlem Renaissance
Military Organization and the Common Soldier of the Civil War

 



The Hitler Phenomenon Image
COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-50
INSTRUCTOR:  R. Voldish
LOCATION: Madison Hall, room 105
TIME: 6:30-9:00 p.m.
DAY: Tuesdays

Few historical figures have been a product of their times as Adolf Hitler. Before WWI, FDR and Churchill had already established prestigious political careers. Yet at that time, Hitler was an out-of-work “artist” barely scraping by with hand-to-mouth jobs. Before WWI, Hitler was unimaginable; after the war, his meteoric rise to prominence was almost fated. This course will examine the principle phases of Hitler’s life and career to show how he used the tools he was given to advance his program of conquering and reordering Europe: the resentment of the Germans, the guilt of many Western leaders, and the general trend of authoritarianism.

 
DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 1/26/16 From Birth to the Chancellery (1889 – 1933): Key factors such as family, geography, culture, and history largely shaped Hitler’s world view. In this he wasn’t typical of most males of his background; where he differed from them was in the extremity of his views. When did Hitler become an anti-Semite and why? How did life in the army fundamentally change him? How was he able to take a tiny, fringe Bavarian party and mount the summit of absolute power?   

Week 2: 2/2/16 Building the Reich (1933 – 1939): Hitler encountered few difficulties in changing the Weimar Republic into the Third Reich. The Germans called this Gleichschaltung. Why did the venerable institutions of government, industry, and the world’s most prestigious university system succumb so easily to the Nazis? What was official policy toward the Jews? Was the entire economy really gearing for war? Why did the Western powers not stop Hitler when his foreign policy goals became plain to all?
    
Week 3:  2/9/16 Blitzkrieg (1939 – 1942): Hitler stunned the world with his early victories, but they were built upon a foundation of sand. How did it come to pass that France was defeated in a mere six weeks and the British forced ingloriously off the Continent? Were there any possibilities of victory? Was his invasion of the Soviet Union his only viable option? What were actually his goals and were they attainable?

Week 4: 2/16/16 Ausharren (“Holding Out”) 1942-1945: After Stalingrad (February1943), the war shifted irrevocably against Germany, but the Germans were able to “hold out” for over two more years. How was this possible? Was the bombing campaign a waste of Allied resources? Were the Allies lacking in initiative? How did the war effect Hitler’s judgment and physical condition? Why did so many Germans continue to follow Hitler when the war was clearly lost?

Week 5: 2/23/16 Legacy: Hitler’s legacy, of course, is entirely negative. Even the monolithic architecture he planned to build to intimidate the rest of the world is largely in ruins, where it exists at all. But the suffering did not end with his death. Millions of Europeans were uprooted, and some semblance of order was not restored until the early 1950s. The Cold War framework, the child of WWII, governed international relations for nearly half a century. The nation of Israel arose from the ashes of the Holocaust, perhaps the indispensable requirement for it. And Germany, ironically, would become the undisputed economic and political leader of Western Europe, but not as a military hegemon, as Hitler planned. This and other consequences of Hitler’s legacy will be carefully discussed.


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One Percent Better: An Introduction to Nutrition and Fitness Basics
COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-51
INSTRUCTOR: C. Amburg with K. Jackson
LOCATION: Madison Hall, room 107
TIME: 6:30-9:00 p.m.
DAY:  Tuesdays

Small one-percent changes in your nutrition and fitness behaviors can compound into big changes in your body. Whether you are looking to lose a few pounds, eat a little healthier, or just learn more about how your body uses what you eat to perform daily activities, this series is for you. Each session will cover topics on nutrition and fitness. There will be hands on practice including meal and exercise planning, executing, and tracking. For those who want to participate, “before and after” weigh-ins and measurements will be taken on the first and last weeks.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 1/26/16 You are What you Eat.

Metabolism? Paleo? Processed? HIIT? What does it all mean? This first session will introduce the basic vocabulary of nutrition and training. Learn not just how to understand information found on food labels, but what exactly to look for and pay attention to. Various food and fitness buzzwords will be described and discussed.


Week 2: 2/2/16 Apples, Bananas, and Pears, Oh My!
You may have heard of body types being described as apple, banana, and pear shaped. This session will focus on different body types, how to eat for your body type and goals, and how in nutrition and fitness one size does NOT fit all. Learn how to build your plate around specific fitness and performance goals. Then perhaps get a little sweaty learning proper form on various basic exercises.

Week 3: 2/9/16 To Eat Carbs or Not to Eat Carbs, That is the Question.

To run or not to run - that is the question. This session will dig into the differences between cardio and strength training. Find out their importance and use, and how to utilize them for your specific goals. Learn about the different tools you may find in the gym - how to use them so you can feel confident walking into your fitness center. The idea of eating to perform will be introduced and explained. Pre- and post-workout nutrition will be discussed. Finally, are carbohydrates the devil?

Week 4:2/16/16 Feel the Burn.
Learn about supplements and if you really need them and find out what recovery is and why is it necessary. Begin to dive deeper in proper exercise forms and techniques and what each movement can do for your body. Also, learn how to plan your own workouts and workout schedule.

Week 5: 2/23/16 Set Goal. Track. Smash Goal. Repeat
This session will focus on how to properly goal set, tracking your nutrition and fitness goals, measurements, and accomplishments. It also addresses how to know when you are ready to progress to the next level in your training. Put all your knowledge to use to sweat, smile, and high five!

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Opera-Passion, Politics, and Power
COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-66
INSTRUCTOR:  N. Markellos
LOCATION:  ROH 110, the Executive Conference Room
TIME:  4:00-6:30 p.m.
DAY: Thursdays

Note: Class will be held in ROH 212 on January 21st and February 18th. All other classes will be held in ROH 110

Opera has been a beloved experience since its inception in the late sixteenth century. There are myriad productions, timeless themes, and then there is the music. This course aims to examine some of the most memorable operas in history by exploring the passion, politics, and power behind various productions.  

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 1/21/16 The Mythic Proportions of Opera
 
Week 2: 1/28/16 Sex, Drugs, and the Barcarolle

Week 3: 2/4/16 The Wayward Revolutionary – Viva la Verdi
    
Week 4: 2/11/16 Caught in a Bad Romance – Tragedy and Realism

Week 5: 2/18/16 The Last Laugh – The Lighter Side of Opera

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Marching Through Old Dominion: Battle Ground Virginia

COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-65
INSTRUCTOR: R. Baumgartner
LOCATION:  ROH 110, the Executive Conference Room
TIME: 4:00-6:30 p.m.
DAY:  Mondays

 

Note: Class will be held in ROH 212 on February 15th. All other classes will be held in ROH 110

Each week we will analyze major American Civil War battles that took place in the state of Virginia.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 1/25/16 Step Off: First Manassas

Week 2:  2/1/16 The Return: Second Manassas

Week 3 2/8/16 The Fight at the River: Fredericksburg
 

Week 4: 2/15/16 The Double Quick: The Overland Campaign

Week 5: 2/22/16 The Crater and The Fall: Petersburg and Richmond
  
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Discovering New Worlds
COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-60
INSTRUCTOR: J. Okun
LOCATION: ROH 106B
TIME: 10:00 a.m. -12:30 p.m.
DAY: Fridays

How has exploration helped us to understand the earth as we see it today?  Through a combined historical, environmental, and geographic lens, we will chart the course of explorers, scientists, theologians, philosophers, merchants and dreamers from ancient times to the present and examine the unfolding and fascinating story of geographic discovery

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 1/22/16 Ancient and Medieval Explorations- Ancient maps are the starting point as we investigate how the earth was understood by Ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, and in Medieval Europe and the Islamic World. We will encounter Aristotle, Alexander, Isidore of Seville, Al-Idrisi, Marco Polo, Petrarch, amongst others thinkers and movers as we investigate the major events and personalities that shaped knowledge of the earth.
    

Week 2: 1/29/16  Beyond the Horizon--The Fourteenth Century marked the beginning of the era of major overland and oceanic expeditions. We will encounter Leo Africanus, Vasco De Gama, Prince Henry the Navigator, the Majorcan cartographers and travel to Portugal, Cape of Good Hope, Timbuktu, and the Canary Islands, as we chart many geographic discoveries being made at an astonishing pace.
        
Week 3: 2/5/16 Encounters with a New World - What were the events and ideas which motivated Columbus to embark across the Ocean? What occurred during the four voyages? Why was the New World named for another explorer, Amerigo Vespucci? Cartographers, Humanists, ocean currents, royalty and navigators all play important roles in this dramatic story of chance, luck, disaster and mystery.

Week 4: 2/12/16 New Global Connections- How did the encounter with the Americas have worldwide implications and set the stage for a modern understanding of the world in many different aspects? Which legends and myths persisted or were created from these discoveries? Slavery, disease, geopolitics, food, and the Northwest Passage are some of the topics to explore.

Week 5: 2/19/16  A Modern Outlook-How did a modern geography of the world emerge in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth centuries? How were enduring cartographic mysteries and misconceptions resolved? What have been some of the great expeditions and geographic discoveries of the modern era? How has technology enabled us to study the earth in exciting new ways?  Focus will be on Linnaeus, Von Humboldt, Lewis and Clark, the Grand Canyon, and satellite imagery.


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The Seventies: Decade of Doubt
COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-52
INSTRUCTOR: J. Pesda
LOCATION: Connector 356
TIME: 2:00-4:30 p.m.
DAY: Tuesdays
Note no class:  March 15th

The Seventies was one of America’s most challenging decades.  It was a time when many Americans, both officials and ordinary citizens,  began to question the course of government and the path of society in the aftermath of Watergate, the Vietnam War, the dramatic  cultural changes and failures both domestic and foreign.

 

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 3/1/16 Loss of Faith: Three Presidents – Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter
A discussion of why Nixon’s presidency ended in disgrace and neither Ford nor Carter earned a second term.

Week 2: 3/8/16 Foreign Policy from Vietnam to the Iranian Hostage Crisis
The malaise after Vietnam, the Oil Embargo, the hope of Camp David and the Iranian disaster   America in Decline.

Week 3: 3/22/16 Cultural Changes
TV from All in the Family to Saturday Night Live – Leisure Suits and Disco Dancing –   Civil Rights Struggles - Gas Crises and Stagflation –Environmentalism - the Computer Revolution
    
Week 4:329/16 Killers and Cults
Ted Bundy, Charles Manson, Jim Jones and the Rising Tide of Violence

Week 5: 4/5/16 Future Trends at the End of the Decade
Unanticipated  outcomes from the beginning of China’s rise to the demise of the Soviet Union, the seeds of turmoil in the Middle East  and the emergence of the US as the world’s only Super Power

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Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-53

INSTRUCTOR: K. Jackson
LOCATION: Madison Hall, room 105
TIME: 6:30-9:00 p.m.
DAY: Tuesdays
Note no class:  March 15th

Mark Twain popularized the notion that “There are three kinds of lies, lies, damned lies and statistics.” He attributed the quote to Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, but even that is a lie. It is true that numbers can have persuasive power. This series will help you arm yourself against being influenced or misled by numbers. Probability, statistics, and numerical paradoxes will be explained, with no prior knowledge of math other than basic computation needed.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 3/1/16 Probability Sports Betting and Games of Chance
In this session learn about how point spreads work in football, how payouts are determined for Roulette, and why lotteries are basically a tax on the innumerate.

Week 1: 3/8/16 Statistics in Sports
The focus this time is on how various sports statistics are computed. From quarterback ratings to WHIP, from the Pythagorean Theorem of Baseball to the Elo Rating System (used to rate relative skills of players in games like chess), you’ll understand what goes into the calculations
.         
Week 3: 3/22/16 Voting and Election Math
It’s all about how you count the votes. Presidential elections, MVP voting in baseball, deciding on the number one team in college football, and picking the next Olympic city all involve different voting schemes. Learn how the method of vote counting impacts the outcome of elections.
    
Week 4: 3/29/16 Apportionment and Fair Division
How do we decide how many representatives each state should get? What’s the best way for two people to share a brownie? How can an estate be split between beneficiaries so that everyone ends up with more than their fair share? These are all questions that can be answered by understanding methods of fair division
   
Week 5: 4/5/16 Grab Bag of Mathematical Oddities
In this last session many mathematical oddities and paradoxes will be introduced. Lou Gehrig had a better batting average than Babe Ruth over each of his first three years, yet when all three years are combined, Ruth has the better average. This example of Simpson’s Paradox and many other interesting mathematical conundrums will be discussed.

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The Gothic Tradition in English and American Literature 
COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-54
INSTRUCTOR: R Lorenzi
LOCATION:  Madison Hall, room105
TIME: 6:30-9:00 p.m.  
DAY: Mondays
Note no class:  March 14th

During the growing popularity of the English novel, the English Gothic novel was born. Influenced by German Gothicism, writers such as Horace Walpole, “Monk” Lewis, and Ann Radcliffe began a tradition that has remained popular ever since.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 3/7/16 What is Gothicism?  The characteristics of the Gothic novel will be introduced
        
Week 2: 3/21/16 We will discuss 18th Century British Novels, including "The Castle of Otranto," The Monk," and " The Mysteries of Udolpho"
        
Week 3: 3/28/16 We will discuss 19th Century British novels "Frankenstein" and "Dracula"

Week 4: 4/4/16 We will discuss 19th Century American Gothics Edgar Allan Poe ("The Fall of Usher") and Nathaniel Hawthorne ("The House of the Seven Gables")
    
Week 5: 4/11/16 Contemporary Americans Anne Rice and Stephen King, with new twists, carry on the Gothic tradition.

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"The Shock of Rock": The Fight for the Souls of Our Youth, 1950-1970

COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-67
INSTRUCTOR:  J. Patrick
LOCATION:  ROH 110, the Executive Conference Room
TIME: 6:30-9:00 p.m.
DAY: Tuesdays
Note no class:  March 15th

We’ll recall the culture shock of Rock ‘n’ Roll and “race music” represented in post-war US and UK media and feature films.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 3/1/16 Fear and Loathing in suburban church basements.
 “Look Up And Live”: ‘The Delinquent, The Hipster, and The Square’
    
Week 2: 3/8/16 Rock culture as economic reality:
1956 Film: “Rock Around The Clock”: Horatio Alger for our times
    
Week 3 3/22/16 It’s a British thing, too:
1962: UK’s “That’s Got Trad, Dad!” (U.S. “Ring-A-Ding Rhythm”) Inter-racial jazz-rock tamed for
fearful ‘mums’ and dads.  

Week 4: 3/29/16 How Much Freedom Is Enough?
1970 “Gimme Shelter”; a cinema verite offering called “the greatest rock film ever made” nevertheless makes us nervous

Week 5: 4/5/16 The New Love-In: Rave Culture’s Answer.
2000: “Groove” Platonic love with “e” and bottled water directed by the guru DJ.


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African American Women Writers: the forgotten souls, big voices of the Harlem Renaissance

COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-68
INSTRUCTOR:  T. Malloy
LOCATION:  ROH 110, the Executive Conference Room
TIME: 4:00-6:30 p.m.
DAY: Mondays

Note no class:  March 14th
Note: Class will be held in ROH 212 on March 21st. All other classes will be held in ROH 110


An enrichment course designed to educate and deepen the knowledge of tis participants, about the Harlem Renaissance. The focus however will be on a few of the women writers of the movement who didn’t rise to the same celebrated fame as the notable Zora Neal Hurston and others, but who made a considerable literary contribution to the era.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 3/7/16 Introduction of the Harlem Renaissance

Week 2: 3/21/16 First writer: Nella Larsen

Week 3 3/28/16 Second writer: Jessie Fauset

Week 4: 4/4/16 Third writer: Gwendolyn Bennett

Week 5: 4/11/16 Final Writer: Alice Dunbar Nelson

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Military Organization and the Common Soldier of the Civil War

COURSE NUMBER: IDY-209-69
INSTRUCTOR:  H. Kaufman
LOCATION:  ROH 110, the Executive Conference Room
TIME: 4:00-6:30 p.m.
DAY: Thursdays
Note no class:  March 17th
Note: Class will be held in ROH 212 on March 10th. All other classes will be held in ROH 110


Focusing on the soldiers who enlisted in the Union & Confederate armies, this course examines the causes of the war as documented through American political history; military nomenclature, structure, tactics and weapons; the motivation of the soldiers; how innovation affected the conduct of the war; and the impact of the war on American life.

DATES & TOPICS:

Week 1: 3/10/16 The Causes of the War: As documented through the political and social history of the United States.

Week 2: 3/24/16 Civil War Organization: Examines the validity of statistics, infantry structure, who are the soldiers & what their motivations are; recruiting; and understanding Civil war military nomenclature & organization.


Week 3 3/31/16 Tactics and Weapons:  Military instruction, drills and the effect of West Point on officers; Napoleonic tactics; development of modern weaponry; tactics and utilization of infantry, artillery and cavalry during the war.

Week 4: 4/7/16 Home Life: The changing roles of women; photographing the war; newspapers & their influence; life at home including Thanksgiving, Christmas, baseball, and mourning customs.

Week 5: 4/14/16 In Their Own Words: Civil War glossaries and definitions; and the use of actual soldier correspondence to show their feelings and emotions in letters home.

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