Dignitas 1101-1102             Sections and Course Descriptions 2015-2016
Course Section # Instructor Mentor TA
Your Path to Meaning and Purpose 1 Gary Boelhower
Aimeejoy Balko
Life 2.0: Taking Life to the Next Level Through Building Resilience 2 Julie Zaruba Fountaine and Melissa Watschke Michael Jackson
Star Wars and Servant Leadership 3 Joelle McGovern Barret Gosen
Star Wars and Servant Leadership 4 Joelle McGovern Michael Johnson
Death and Dying with Dignity 5 Elizabeth Fait and Elizabeth Domholdt Alexi Bopray
Gender Norms, Violence and Dignity 6 Kelly Mullan Shelby Schiller
Dignity Through the Benedictine Tradition 7 John Bauman Claire Bjorklund
The Guest/Host Relationship: The Joys, Dangers, and Complexities of Hospitality 8 Rob Larson Veronica Cich
Global Health and Social Justice 9 Shirley Slettedahl Mathew Bushey
Global Health and Social Justice 10 Shirley Slettedahl Kimberly Rice
Dignity and Consumption 11 David Vosen Ashley Holt
Dignity in Duluth 12 Shawna Weaver Bailey Schoelzel
Dignity in Duluth 13 Shawna Weaver Diana Mena
So, How Are the Children? Lessons in Dignity, Leadership and Making a Difference 14 Kelly Mullan Bre Agee
Personal Finance and Dignity 15 Jennifer Pilon Izaiah Bishop
The Intersection of Mindfulness, Happiness and Human Dignity 16 Mary Bridget Lawson Aleks Radakovic
The Struggle is Real 17 Katie Wieliczkiewicz and Lexie Generous Reitler Hodgert
Art as Expression of Dignity 18 Peter Spooner Tasha Engesser
Your College Adventure: Learning, Leading, Living at CSS 19 Shawn Olesewski  Jane Sloan
Honors Classes (HON 1111)
Course Section # Instructor Peer Mentor
Utopia, Dystopia and the Idea of Human Perfectibility 1 Thomas Morgan Michael Bruner
Utopia, Dystopia and the Idea of Human Perfectibility 2 Thomas Morgan Emily Lundgren
God or Not? New Debates on Religion and Secularism 3 Randall Poole Elizabeth Fudge
   

 

 

 

DIGNITAS COURSE DESCRIPTIONS - 2015 - 2016

DGN 1101 001
Instructor: Gary Boelhower
Tuesdays 12:00-1:40 p.m.
We will explore together how we are called into meaningful work and responsible living by our own interior passions and talents, as well as by the needs, problems and opportunities in society. We will look for the places of intersection between the world's deep needs and our own major concerns and interests. We will explore our strengths and accomplishments with appreciative inquiry as we look for clues to our own selfhood and vision for life. We will study what diverse religious and philosophical traditions have identified as a "happy" or meaningful life and how we are called to a particular life purpose. We will create a vision statement for our lives that may include personal and professional direction.

 

DGN 1101 002
Instructors: Julie Zaruba Fountaine and Melissa Watschke
Life 2.0: Taking Life to the Next Level Through Building Resilience 
Tuesdays 4:00 - 5:40 p.m.
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity. Resilience is not something all individuals are born with; however, the resilience skill set can be taught and the lessons learned can empower individuals to manage stress and learn to thrive. This course will aid in the enhancement of knowledge, the development of pragmatic skills, and assessment of attitudes necessary to promote positive lifelong wellness decisions. Through reading, learning circles, discussion and participation in activities students will be able to operationalize the main tenets of resilience.

DGN 1101 003
Instructor: Joelle McGovern 
Star Wars and Servant Leadership
Tuesdays 4:00 - 5:40 p.m.
Star Wars and Servant Leadership will examine the relationship between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker and discuss the importance of forgiveness and redemption as well as explore the universal concepts of agape love and Servant Leadership. To draw deeper connections among the key principles of Servant Leadership and Star Wars, students will be required to read and discuss Star Wars Episode III Revenge of the Sith along with various scholarly articles and texts related to Servant Leadership. Through group projects, personal reflection, and class discussions, we will explore how servant leadership upholds human dignity. Students can expect to reflect on some of the more meaningful moments in their lives and discover how self reflection and personal responsibility call all of us to become servant leaders.

DGN 1101 004 
Instructor: Joelle McGovern
Star Wars and Servant Leadership
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
Star Wars and Servant Leadership will examine the relationship between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker and discuss the importance of forgiveness and redemption as well as explore the universal concepts of agape love and Servant Leadership. To draw deeper connections among the key principles of Servant Leadership and Star Wars, students will be required to read and discuss Star Wars Episode III Revenge of the Sith along with various scholarly articles and texts related to Servant Leadership. Through group projects, personal reflection, and class discussions, we will explore how servant leadership upholds human dignity. Students can expect to reflect on some of the more meaningful moments in their lives and discover how self reflection and personal responsibility call all of us to become servant leaders.

DGN 1101 005  
I
nstructor: Elizabeth Fait and Elizabeth Domholdt
Death and Dying with Dignity
Thursdays 12:00-1:40 p.m.
Together, we will explore the collective cultures of death and dying in the U.S. and how we define dignity in that process. We will examine legislation such as the Washington and Oregon Death with Dignity acts and how that has impacted people in those states as well as in the larger world. We will explore hospice, the history of hospice, and the impact that has made on our culture. We will also look at health care and how that supports or doesn't support people's end of life wishes.

DGN 1101 006  
Instructor: Kelly Mullan
Gender Norms, Violence and Dignity
Tuesdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
What happens to people who defy gender-based social norms and expectations? What forms of violence do they experience, and why? Who has power to enforce gender norms, and how do they use violence maintain it? This class aggressively begins the dignity-themed process of using intellectual inquiry to challenge stereotypes.

DGN 1101 007
Instructor: John Bauman
Dignity Through the Benedictine Tradition
Tuesdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
Together, we will discover the meaning of dignity through the study of The Rule of St. Benedict, the Benedictine Values, our family narratives, readings, works of art, music, and mass media. This will be accomplished by having in-class discussions, making observations of and reflecting on human interactions, and gaining insights from those who live the Rule as part of their life's calling. We will explore dignity through the Benedictine Tradition and how it relates, or doesn't relate, to our own lives. We desire to celebrate the extraordinary of our existence.

As a student in this course, you will be prepared for classes, read numerous texts, engage in class discussion, participate in course activities, write short papers, produce and present multi-media presentations, create and present oral assignments, work together in small groups, and participate in on and off-campus activities. 

DGN 1101 008
Instructor: Dr. Robert Larson
The Guest/Host Relationship: The Joys, Dangers, and Complexities of Hospitality
Tuesdays/Thursdays 1:00-1:50 p.m.

In this course, we will explore the intricacies of the relationship formed between the role of the host and the role of the stranger or guest in the hospitality phenomenon. Using popular and celebrated film, literature and other mass media, we will develop a deeper understanding of this worldwide, fundamental interactivity. Throughout the course, we will explore hospitality from human and non-human perspectives, through fiction and non-fiction, philosophy, theology, and psychology. 

What are the pleasures and dangers associated with the stranger? What are the assumptions and liberties of the host? How do the guest and host roles relate to the designations of ‘the self' and ‘the other'? How do we know when we are the host or the guest? Is it possible to mistake or underestimate one's role? How might diversity, privilege, conflict, and assumption affect the guest/host relationship?

From popular game shows and telephone operators to Internet access and the Heavens, we will explore the many associations and ‘callings' of the host body. Similarly, we will explore the role of the stranger in its myriad forms. Our discussion will lead toward a clearer picture of stewardship, intentional being, and the potential for conscious ambassadorship in a complex, multi-dimensional world. Ultimately, we seek in this course a newfound dignity and sense of respect as we endeavor each role in our daily lives.

DGN 1101 009 
Instructor: Shirley Slettedahl MSA, MSN, RN
Global Health and Social Justice
Tuesdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
Examines the process of globalization and how it has dramatically affected the health and social justice of all people. Global health, viewed as a human right, involves personal and population health issues, community problems, and concerns that transcend national boundaries. We will explore why certain populations bear an unreasonable burden of poverty and disease, and what we, individually and collectively, can do to tackle some of these health problems.

DGN 1101 010 
Instructor: Shirley Slettedahl MSA, MSN, RN
Global Health and Social Justice
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
Examines the process of globalization and how it has dramatically affected the health and social justice of all people. Global health, viewed as a human right, involves personal and population health issues, community problems, and concerns that transcend national boundaries. We will explore why certain populations bear an unreasonable burden of poverty and disease, and what we, individually and collectively, can do to tackle some of these health problems.

DGN 1101 011 
Instructor: David Vosen
Dignity and Consumption
Tuesdays/Thursdays 12:00 - 12:50 p.m.
Worried about your carbon footprint? Should you pay more for organic food? Is your bottled water better than the alternatives? Is there enough water and oil to peacefully support our ever expanding and consuming human race? How do we find a dignified balance between our personal use of resources and the conservation of this unique blue planet?

In this section of Dignitas, we will begin the semester by examining our personal consumption of resources (water, food, and fuel). This journey will be enhanced by thought provoking articles, music, films, and field trips. In the second half of the course, we will investigate the cumulative effect of individual choices and their implication on past, present and future resources of the earth. All topics will include an underlying theme of chemical process and the scientific method.

The semester grades are based on a variety of assignments: reflection/research posts and replies online, class attendance and participation, activities to estimate your personal consumption of resources (Fall), participation in events and field trips (Fall), 1 reflection paper (Fall), 1 research papers (Fall & Spring), and a semester presentation (Spring).

DGN 1101 012 
Instructor: Shawna Weaver
Dignity in Duluth
Tuesdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
At CSS, we live within a beautiful city that has a complex story. The objective of this course is to learn about the social, economic, political, historical, and ecological facets of Duluth. We will explore the complicated web of justice through a local and global framework. A bit like service learning and a lot about justice issues, this course is all about learning how to help in ways that are really needed. Students can expect to invest emotionally, to develop professional relationships community members, and to feel empowered as active citizens.

DGN 1101 013 
Instructor: Shawna Weaver
Dignity in Duluth
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
At CSS, we live within a beautiful city that has a complex story. The objective of this course is to learn about the social, economic, political, historical, and ecological facets of Duluth. We will explore the complicated web of justice through a local and global framework. A bit like service learning and a lot about justice issues, this course is all about learning how to help in ways that are really needed. Students can expect to invest emotionally, to develop professional relationships community members, and to feel empowered as active citizens.

DGN 1101 014 
Instructor: Kelly Mullan
So, How Are the Children? Lessons in Dignity, Leadership and Making a Difference 
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m. 
It is said that the health and well being of the children in any given community is an indicator of the health and well being of the entire community. So, how are the children of Duluth doing? This class will explore the impact that poverty, racism, classism and "-isms" have on young people, as well as the broader community. Guided by class readings, guest speakers, experiential learning opportunities and a hands-on service learning project where students will serve as volunteers at a local elementary school, students will examine and discover their role as leaders, advocates, mentors and citizens of this complex world. Ready to find out your capacity to be an agent of change? Interested in exploring the meaning and purpose of your life? This class is for those students who want to harness the power of their potential to make their world and their community a better place. Please note that there is a service learning component to this class. Students will be asked volunteer for 20 hours a semester at Myers-Wilkins Elementary School. Typically, students are asked to serve their volunteer hours between 2PM and 6PM, Monday - Friday.

 

DGN 1101 015
Instructor: Jennifer Pilon
Personal Finance and Dignity
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
In this section of Dignitas, students will learn about personal finance concepts and develop personal finance goals after better clarifying their own values. Students will develop the ability to make informed financial decisions related to earning, saving, spending, borrowing, and giving. Students will better understand and appreciate how their personal financial choices can impact their own financial health and the lives of others.

Societal perspectives on wealth and poverty and will be examined and challenged through the themes of human dignity, diversity, Benedictine values, Catholic intellectual tradition and Catholic social teaching. Students will participate in service projects to help the poor, both on campus and the greater community.

DGN 1101 016
Instructor: Mary Bridget Lawson
The Intersection of Mindfulness, Happiness and Human Dignity
Wednesdays 7:00 - 8:40 p.m.
This experiential course will explore the field of "positive psychology" with a focus on the topics of human dignity, cultural identity, gratitude, forgiveness, mindfulness and "the science of happiness."  Through weekly readings, mindfulness activities, online lectures, personal reflection/journaling, class dialogue, and reflective posts we will seek to enhance our personal and collective well-being.

DGN 1101 017 
Instructors: Katie Wieliczkiewicz and Lexie Generous
The Struggle is Real
Tuesdays/Thursdays 12:00-12:50 p.m.
This course aims to empower students to be activists, allies, advocates, and adults in the 21st century. Through exploration, we hope to engage in a journey of self-awareness, community engagement, and relationship building with each other and the world around us. We will unpack concepts of communication, relationships, justice, intersectionality, and solidarity to create new narratives of how students "show up" in the struggle for dignity, empathy, and human rights. Students can expect this course to challenge, engage, and affirm their commitment to change.


DGN 1101 018
Instructor: Peter Spooner
Art as Expression of Dignity
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
Contemporary art is huge in scope -- diverse, multi-voiced and interdisciplinary. This course looks at art from 1950 to the present in terms of the search for self, in terms of social critique and in terms of 21st century community building. Investigating artists around the globe, we learn to appreciate diverse traditions, new perspectives, and see how artists are positively impacting physical and virtual space. The course emphasizes artists who work across disciplinary boundaries of art, science, religion and psychology. 

Art and making will be viewed through the core values of Catholic Intellectual Tradition, Diversity, Benedictine Values, Catholic Social Teaching, and Dignity. Instruction includes films, slide shows, hands-on art activities, guest artists, local field trips, and a museum visit. Students are expected to actively participate, complete short projects, essays and presentations, and visit several art events or performances on their own.

DGN 1101 019
Instructor: Shawn Olesewski
Your College Adventure: Learning, Leading, Living at CSS
Tuesdays/Thursdays 12:00 - 12:50 p.m.
What is your purpose here at CSS? Is it to get a job when you leave or is it about something more? In this course we will explore what it means to be a student in the classroom, develop outside of the classroom, and gain meaningful leadership experience here at CSS.

Do you learn well by doing? Our course will both be active and reflective. Toward the Dignitas learning outcomes we will create experiential learning opportunities for students each week. Each semester we will have 2 off campus trips/experiences in the wilderness (camping) and within the Duluth community. The required trips dates are tentatively planned for September 25th - 27th and February 19th - 21st or April 15th - 17th. The Spring trip dates will be confirmed before Winter Break. Throughout the course we will read wilderness survival stories and examine how the people succeeded and faltered in their leadership roles. If you're looking to be a leader on campus, this course will be a great opportunity for you.

  


Honors Sections 

*Students must have successfully interviewed for the Honors Program at CSS prior to enrolling in these sections.

HON 1111 001
Instructor: Tom Morgan
Utopia, Dystopia and the Idea of Human Perfectibility
Tuesdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
This course will explore the idea of human perfectibility in Utopian and dystopian literature. We will concentrate on the dystopian critics. Some of them have seen that human perfectibility is unfeasible or at least difficult in view of the "dark side of the human condition." Others have depicted, often brilliantly, the dangers of external, coercive approaches to human perfectibility. This course will help students approach great books (philosophy and fiction) and to think, speak and write critically about what they read and hear.

HON 1111 002
Instructor: Tom Morgan
Utopia, Dystopia and the Idea of Human Perfectibility
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.
This course will explore the idea of human perfectibility in Utopian and dystopian literature. We will concentrate on the dystopian critics. Some of them have seen that human perfectibility is unfeasible or at least difficult in view of the "dark side of the human condition." Others have depicted, often brilliantly, the dangers of external, coercive approaches to human perfectibility. This course will help students approach great books (philosophy and fiction) and to think, speak and write critically about what they read and hear.

HON 1111 003
Instructor: Randall Poole
God or Not? New Debates on Religion and Secularism
Thursdays 12:00 - 1:40 p.m.

The past ten years or so have witnessed new, highly contentious debates over religion and secularism. On the one side is the so-called "new atheism," championed by a series of best-selling books such as Richard Dawkins's The God Delusion, Daniel Dennett's Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon, Sam Harris's The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future, and Christopher Hitchens's God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. On the other side are new works in defense of religion, including Karen Armstrong's The Case for God, Anthony Flew's There is a God: How the World's Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind, and David Bentley Hart's Atheist Delusions: The Christian Revolution and Its Fashionable Enemies. Related to but distinct from the issue of the rationality of religious belief is the debate over secularism, separation of church and state, the place of religion in public life, and whether religion has contributed more to violence, war, and terrorism or to peace and justice. This course will explore these debates and their relation to human dignity.