University of Southern Indiana
Focus | LA Newsletter

Fall 2020

Find more Liberal Arts highlights in our previous issues.

Fall 2020 Highlights

Fall 2020 Review

The College would like to thank Mr. Randy L. Haaff '84 and Mr. John M. Lawrence '73 for their generous donations that allowed our Performing Arts department to procure two new Steinway/Boston upright pianos for the music labs on campus.

"This generous support by two engaged and committed alumni is just so wonderful and indicative of the spirit of USI as we seek to transform lives." - Dr. James M. Beeby, Dean of the College


Follow our series "12 Days of LA" for stories about Christmas and how it relates to different areas of concentration within the College!


  • After being closed over the summer, the McCutchan Art Center/Pace Galleries (MAC/PACE) opened the academic year with AND NOW THIS! The 2020 USI Art and Design Faculty Exhibition. The exhibition featured recent artworks by the current studio artists and designers who make up the Art and Design Department. Participants were encouraged to take inspiration from current events.

  • While most of the world went into full work-from-home mode, Kasey Hunt-Short returned to work in the radio station, 95.7 The Spin, this semester. How has this semester been different than others?

  • What began as a one-year contract with USI turned into a 19-year relationship that he is still jazzed about. Find out more about our resident Sociology Rockstar, Steven Williams, in the Fall 2020 edition of illume.

  • On October 1, the USI Multicultural Center hosted a Latinx Heritage Month presentation featuring filmmaker Adriana Bosch. Before the discussion, Kassandra Santos '21, performed her poem “Porque Siendo Chicana.” “[The poem] explains the struggle I share commonly with children of immigrant families. I don't just get to be Chicana during this month [celebrated September 15 through October 15], I am Chicana all year long," said Santos. "It tells a story of how I embrace my roots and provides recognition of the struggles my community has had and continues to have." Read her poem.

Words of encouragement

On the bulletin board outside the Social Work Department, you’ll find little notes of encouragement that anyone can take. The Social Work Club originally wrote the notes last spring semester to distribute to the seniors after Spring Break. With the pandemic outbreak, those cards could not be disseminated as planned so now they are publicly available to anyone that needs an extra boost.

  • Anna Ardelean ’22 was the featured Student Point of View (POV) in illume. In her piece, she talks about how USI is “More Than an Institution

  • In November 2020, Dell Technologies and Team Liquid hosted a panel discussion on research in Esports, specifically around helping athletes compete safely and sustainably. Dr. Crystal N. Steltenpohl, Assistant Professor of Psychology and founder of the Online Technologies Lab at USI, participated in this panel which can be viewed on Team Liquid's Twitch.

  • Master of Public Administration alum, Chaze Patrick, was featured on the WNIN public affairs program "Two Main Street with David James" with fellow Toastmaster Charron Combs. They discuss what is takes to be a good public speaker and facing your fears.

  • The Anne and Bettye Statham Community Engagement Award is now available to students. The award is intended both to recognize a student's past community service and to support an ongoing community project. Apply through AwardSpring (accessed through MyUSI) before January 15, 2021.

Find out more about our faculty, student, and alumni accomplishments and publications on our LA Achievements page.

LA Staff with a dog from the humane society

Members of the Liberal Arts administrative staff participated in the Vanderburgh Humane Society's “Cardio for Canines” in November 2020. Cardio for Canines allows the community to get out, get active, and walk a VHS shelter dog who needs exercise & companionship every Saturday. Find out more about the program and how you can participate. 

Virtual Events

  • For the first time, the College of Liberal Arts hosted two of its annual series, the Liberal Arts Faculty Colloquium and the Global Salon Series, completely online. To see presentations on topics such as “The Perils of Plastics” and “Life and Science at McMurdo Station, Antarctica,” check out the USI LA YouTube channel.

  • USI Theatre debuted its first virtual delivery of a performance with Songs for A New World in October this year. Read about their challenges, and the new opportunities they found working in this format.

  • The USI World Languages and Cultures department teamed with the Performing Arts department to bring us a socially distanced Día de Muertos celebration this year. See their performances now.

  • For the 2020 Berger Lecture, the USI Social Work department welcomed Dr. Gena McClendon of Washington University in St. Louis to present Electoral Justice Meets Democracy: Challenging Racism and Systemic Barriers through Research and Practice. See Dr. McClendon’s presentation on YouTube.

Filth and Foulness

The rescheduled 13th Interdisciplinary Colloquium is accepting faculty, staff, and student proposals for their April 2021 virtual event. The theme: Filth and Foulness. Open to each of the Colleges! Find out how to enter your work at

  • Leading up to the 2020 election, the Center for Social Justice Education teamed with the Communications Department to produce the Media and Voter Education Project with a goal of providing helpful information related to media literacy and voting. To hear from the students themselves, check out “Student Voices: Why USI Students Voted in 2020

  • The 2020 Community of Scholars event took place just days before Election Night. The USI Political Science, Public Administration, and Philosophy Department invited Mr. Abdul-Hakim Shabazz, a lawyer and political commentator known for his radio talk show “Abdul at Large” on WIBC-FM in Indianapolis and the weekly public affairs program, “Indiana Issues.” Shabazz is also the editor and publisher of

USI Theatre performing It's A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play

USI Theatre actors on stage in the Performing Arts Center during the recording of It's A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play

Program Updates

  • Our newest graduate program, the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice (MACJ) will begin Fall 2021 and is now accepting applications. Find out how to apply on their website.

  • The Professional Studies program will offer a new Health Services concentration in their Applied Studies program beginning Fall 2021. Adult learners looking to complete their degrees can apply for the Adult Student Grant, offered by the state for Indiana residents.

The USI Women's Choir and USI Chamber Choir practicing in the Griffin Center this semester.

Upcoming Events

Save the Date

  • January 19 Woman. An art exhibition by Efroymson Bridge Year Fellow Megan Thorne
  • February 2-3・Exploring Graduate Studies Day
  • February 17-18・LA Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee Teach-In
  • February 18・Social Activism Fair
  • February 18・Mandela Social Justice Day featuring Dr. Manisha Sinha
  • April 5-9・Interdisciplinary Colloquium: Filth and Foulness
  • April 7・Graduate Colloquium

Keep up with LA events throughout each semester on our Upcoming Events page.

Senior Seminar Exhibition 2020

The Senior Seminar Exhibition was on display in the McCutchan Art Center/Pace Galleries during October and November 2020, featuring the creative work of 26 USI students studying studio art, graphic design, interactive media and illustration.

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