Visiting professor speaks about community

michael wesch

By LAUREN EBBEN, Staff Reporter ¦

On Wednesday, Nov. 1, a professor from Kansas State University spoke to a group of students about ways they could help their community.

Dr. Michael Wesch, a professor of cultural anthropology, is internationally recognized as a leader in teaching innovation. He is well-known for his digital work, his videos reaching over 20 million views and featured frequently at international film festivals and major academic conferences worldwide. He has won several awards for his work, including the US Professor of the Year Award from the Carnegie Foundation.

He spoke at AC in an effort to get staff and students to start thinking about potential projects they could participate in for civics week in February.

“The idea behind the civics week is that it will help students be able to find a way that they can help each other, that we can become a community where students are helping students,” Heather Voran, faculty development coordinator, said. “It is to help students understand what it means to be civic-minded, and to help students to be able to reach out of their comfort zone and become more active in their community.”

During the talk, students discussed problems within the community, such as student poverty and homelessness, and brainstormed ideas for what the college could do to help fix these problems.

“I think it was a very worldly discussion that brought different people from different programs at AC to talk about some topics within our community here in Amarillo that are very important,” Katelyn Draper, a nursing major, said. “And just getting more awareness and getting more of a unified motivation towards making something greater happening in our community.”

“I think we learned a lot with the ideas that we threw around today on how to get more involved and just do something for each other and ourselves because that’s essentially what we’re here for,” Gabriella Young, a business administration major, said.

Wesch, who has participated in several projects for civics week throughout the years, including on his own campus, mentioned ways students can judge how impactful their actions are.

“One way we can measure our success that’s non-partisan and doesn’t have anything to do with religion or politics or anything would be just how connected are we as a community,” Wesch said.

Civics week will be held in February 2019.

From Kansas State University, Professor Michael Wesch speaks to students about ways they can help their community.

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