By Elise Fernandez ’13
As the spring semester drew to a close, more than 60 first-year students shared their research with members of the Siena community at an annual conference showcasing their work. Their research interests ranged from history to popular culture, from women’s issues to war, from public policy to the human impact on the environment and from social justice to the idea of the beautiful.
“It’s important that we give our students opportunities to present their work publicly. In this way, we all benefit,” said Professor of English and Director of the First-Year Seminar Meg Woolbright, D.A. “It’s also important for faculty to hear the topics that the freshmen are working on, so we can continue to encourage research beyond the freshman year.”
Katherine Considine ’16 said her freshman seminar class was “On the Beautiful” taught by professor of philosophy Dr. Paul Santilli. During class, students questioned the definition and meaning of beauty and discussed personal and societal views in different cultures and during different time periods. “My fellow students and I explored topics we were interested in and became experts on the subject and how it relates to beauty,” Considine said.
Siena College’s First-Year Seminar introduces incoming students to college-level work and encourages them to consider new perspectives. “I personally loved freshman seminar,” said Considine. “The class challenged me to think of the ideals and beliefs of different people and societies from around the world.”