Ensuring a vital faculty and vital departments
The intellectual challenge

Ensuring a vital faculty and vital departments
The intellectual challenge

Saturday, October 4, 2003
2:00 - 4:00 pm

Facilitator:
Cathy Middlecamp, Distinguished Faculty Associate, Chemistry Department- University of Wisconsin-Madison

Abstract:
What do race and ethnicity have to do with teaching chemistry? Ten years ago, this question surprised me when a colleague posed it. At the time, I had never before heard the word thermodynamics used in the same sentence with the words race and ethnicity. This question also marked the beginning of a journey into examining my own practices in the chemistry classroom. The first of my intellectual challenges lay in my rephrasing this question as "What does science have to do with ethnicity/race/gender"? I will offer how I met this challenge, asking questions about how science can be relevant to the life/culture/world of my general chemistry students. I will also describe a new chemistry course, "Uranium and American Indians", the first science course to meet the UW System-wide Ethnic Studies requirement. Much of the session, though, will be devoted to exploring this and other intellectual challenges together.