Honorable News Volume 9, Issue 3
Justice for All: Reflections on the Common Good —Zoe Vlastos, Class of 2015
25th of March, 2014
Honors Lunch Friday, March 28
Senior Thesis Defenses (see calendar on page 4)
Inside this issue: They Say / We Say
Director’s Note 3 An Artistic Reflection on Life in Honors
Senior Thesis Defense Calendar
“What is Justice?” My brain scrambled, trying to comprehend the words Dr. Bowie has just uttered. With thoughts still on travel and Spanish from a recent semester abroad in Argentina, I felt this question to be impossibly large for the first Monday back in class. Define my idea of justice? I had little idea of where to start! However, as we have delved into this question more deeply over the past eight weeks in the honors program’s Junior Seminar I have realized that, although actually more nuanced than it seemed at first hearing, this question is actually quite intriguing to explore. For the first half of the semester we have looked at the perspectives of different philosophers throughout history. Starting with Plato’s Republic we have worked our way to MacIntyre and Sandel, enveloping ourselves in the thoughts of each theory of justice not only through readings, but also with class discussion and
case studies. I have found the real world examples used in this class to be one of its most useful aspects. We take the ideas of the different philosophers and apply them to current issues, juxtaposing the theories to try to understand what is the “right” or the “just” thing to do. These discussions have surfaced many questions. What is the difference between right and just? What role do governments, majorities, minorities and individuals play in finding and following justice? Can two things that are right be at odds with one another? Are there moral limits to markets? What do different cultures have to say about justice? The questions that peel off that original quest for justice are infinite and diverse. One question that has particularly caught my interest asks how an idea of justice can be arrived at when there are so many disparate views. Not only do distinct cultures and individuals have varied opinions of justice, but also
the philosophers who have thought long and hard about this topic. Is there a “best” version of just or right? Can any one version be correct when there are so many? Of course, one thought is that there is no simple and single answer to that first impossible seeming question. Perhaps justice is a search, a journey, a Chautauqua. Then the question becomes, how do we negotiate in a world where justice is a slippery voyage of many ideas? The author of our text Justice: A Reader, suggests that conversation is necessary when confronted by issues of justice. I would agree. What else do we do in class but discuss our opinions of justice? I find it exciting and informative to hear the perspective of the economics, politics, science, humanities and arts students. I have found that, for me, answering this question requires deep conversation, something I have found in the Justice for All: Reflections on the Common Good.
Honors Symposium Approaches! -Ian Drew, Class of 2015
The Honors Symposium on April 5th will have a group of nine students representing Regis. Ian Drew, Kat Meyer, Zoe Vlastos, Anya Thurmes, McKenna Mettling, Thuy-Vi Vuong, Andy Horner, Hailey Benesch, and Kaley Harless are all working on presenting solutions to heal from tragedies such as school shootings. We are making use of Regis' motto or "Leaders in ser-
vice of others" in order to create a unique solution through the implementation of dialogues, community services, and other forms of communication and group therapy. We are excited to be in the final stages of compiling the presentation and to actually attend the Symposium come April. Our goals for the conference remain the same, though, to network
with a wide variety of Honors students from across the Front Range and to present our views on a difficult topic with the honors community at large. It will be another incredible experience, and we are looking very much forward to it.
We Say, They Say: What Does Your Flag Look Like? The discussions on our Honors board continue to excite lively responses and interesting ideas. This round our question came from Dr. Jacobson. See what students have said and what Dr. Jacobson’s answer is, and stop by the Honors study room to see what our next question is!
Words from Dr. Jacobson Small and inconspicuous, the flag of an introvert. Untethered, it’s carried by the wind. You may see it dancing among tall, dark pines. cavorting with wild flowers in an alpine meadow. bobbing in a mountain lake beneath a brilliant, blue sky. waiting silently for the sprinkling of
starlight on the ceiling of the stark vermillion desert. Brightly colored by joy. Yellow just off center The color of earth’s star. The source of heat and light. An insignificant piece of a vast universe.
Questions or comments? Email Connie at email@example.com, or James Persichetti at firstname.lastname@example.org. Page 2
Life in Medical School
-Caitlin Wojciehoski and Shannon Quirk , Regis Alumni
It’s hard to believe, but we are almost “half doctors.” Caitlin and I are in our second year at Creighton University School of Medicine. Caitlin is interested in Obstetrics and Gynecology, and I am interested in Dermatology. Upon completing the Regis Honors program in 2012, we have become even closer friends. We feel so blessed that we were able to continue our Jesuit education at Creighton, and we still hold the values we learned at Regis close to our hearts. Creighton incorporates Jesuit values into our education in several ways. For example, a class
called “Healer’s Art” involved meeting with small groups lead by current physicians. We discussed how to deal with the challenges of being a physician and how to make the most positive impact on our patient’s lives. We also started our first year with an Ethics course. This class promoted Catholic values, while reminding us to respect all beliefs and cultures. Lastly, our class organized a memorial service for the families of all the wonderful people who donated their body to our Anatomy program. This was a meaningful way to thank them for allowing us to learn more about the human body than we ever could out of a
textbook. We feel that being “women in service of others” has really shaped our medical school experience. For instance, we have both been involved in the Magis Clinic, which serves the homeless population of Omaha by providing free healthcare. Furthermore, I have really enjoyed spending several Saturdays volunteering for Habitat for Humanity. Caitlin has valued being a source of medical information to the women at the Bethlehem house, which is a Catholic organization that provides housing and care for new and expecting mothers. Not only are we learning how to be adept clinicians, but we are also
reminded to genuinely care for the whole person. Our patients will not be labeled by a particular disease, but rather will be seen as people faced with an unfavorable situation. In conclusion, we often look back on our Honors seminars at Regis, as we continue to “search for meaning” and promote “justice for all.” We still value the relationships we formed with our mentors at Regis, and continue to use them as role models for ourselves. At the same time, we also enjoy serving as mentors to current Regis students interested in medicine.
Director’s Note: March 2014 —Dr. Bowie, Shiny New Dean Dear Lovers of Learning. Spring is in the air, spring break a fond memory, and your journey to various summer internships and opportunities will be here before you know it. I’m hearing wonderful things from each of the honors seminars this spring as you continue to impress the faculty with your engagement with profound questions and your love of learning. I was especially intrigued by the reflections from our Tradition and Innovation students on their community listening experience. Although this was a new addition to the course this year, Drs. Taylor and Kloos assure me it will become a regular feature in the years ahead. Each reflection that I read shared in compelling ways important intersections you experienced between your Volume 9, Issue 3
journey as students and the rich and varied lives of our guests. So as we journey into spring, I’ve been reflecting a bit on the idea of pilgrimage. As you may know, Ignatius Loyola, who founded the Jesuits, envisioned most everything in life as part of a journey, as a pilgrimage that involves the willingness to be transformed. As you wander through this semester, then, you might consider the way in which this Ignatian invitation to change is playing out in your life. Perhaps you’re a senior desperately hoping for transformation as you wrap up your thesis or your final courses, or perhaps you find yourself as a junior, focusing on the challenges that might better promote justice in our world. Or perhaps you’re noting the ebb and flow of transforming
forces as they intersect with a world perpetually in chaos and order, or in dialogue with tradition and innovation. No matter where you find yourself, welcome to the pilgrimage we call life! As most of you know by now, my pilgrimage is taking me in new directions next year, as I step into the challenges associated with being Dean of Regis College. Although I’m eager to embrace these challenges, I will also very much miss the daily interactions with all of you. My life has been richly blessed by your company on my journey as honors director the past 10 years, as together we have pondered some of life’s greatest and most compelling questions. As Annie Dillard reminds us, we are all travelers, we all journey toward penance
and redemption. And I believe with Dillard that “God trusts and allots to everyone an area to redeem: this creased and feeble life.” Thank you all for the many ways you have lifted me up over the past years, for the ways you have enriched my creased and feeble life.
Honors Mural, Honored Memories
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—Chiara Gonzales, Class of 2015 Right side shrubbery: Dr Palmer in Colonel Brandon's hat. Shrubbery, a seemingly odd subject our professor invested himself in during his Fall '14 Austen course. Trees: Rainbow donkey pinata. Fun story—the class of 2015 took out their Newman frustrations on a pinata in the quad. Newman's Cane remains missing. Reward if found?
What's new? Many of you may have noticed quite a few changes to the Honors mural in our Study Room, a reflection of the evolving Honors discussion throughout our time here at Regis. There's a treeline and a couple clouds—but most importantly—a few fun figures representing our memories and stories. This is a list of a couple of the things I've added, and a shout-out to anyone in classes down the line interested in adding to the wall. Here's to watching our story as a dithyrambic community evolve! Take a closer look at Main Hall—there's brick labeled Phaedrus somewhere. Sometimes, we just need to be reminded that looking at each brick one by one is what we need to overcome our troubles, to see our own impact, and to build our way to a more cohesive “big
picture.” Left window, Main Hall: the silhouette of Virginia Woolf. For A Room of One's Own, which teaches us to understand, dissect, and affect our place within our own minds, society, and in fiction. Stairs, Main Hall: Dr Bruhn as a pirate. Because it's fun when our professors dress up. That “R” on his book is for Romanticism. Yep, one of his academic gems. Balcony, Main Hall: St Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuits! Right window, Main Hall: the silhouettes of Tiny Tim's crutch and a wheelchair. Cheesecake FactoryChristmas Carol shenanigans—one of the program's favorite traditions—brings about memorable laughs and facepalms every year (“God breshush ….................... EVERYONE!”). And a shout-out to Pirsig with the wheelchair brings our iconic handicapped together.
Mountains: Dr Bowie on Pirsig's motorcycle, a little shout-out to our director's love of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and the telling of stories over a journey. Annie Dillard, strapped to the fuselage, as per her memorable closing words to For the Time Being. We start and end our time at Regis with Dillard, and many continue to travel with her long after.
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Regis University Honors Program Address: Carroll Hall 121 3333 Regis Blvd H-16 Denver Colorado 80221
And last but not least, Dr Howe throwing lightning from the clouds! Both a Religious Studies and a Chaos and Order expert, it seemed fitting that Dr Howe would be throwing bolts of insight down upon the masses. And really, he's pretty sassy. This is only the first step in forming the mural. If you'd like to help out, contact Connie Gates! We're looking to add as the students—and years—move on.
Senior Thesis Defense Calendar