Campus COLL 300: Visitors

Among the criteria adopted for the Campus COLL 300: "bring the world to W&M" through instructional content and significant involvement of students and faculty with COLL 300 campus visitors - a fruitful experience of disorientation that allows students to see their own lives in broader perspective.

In a typical semester the CLA supports campus COLL 300 courses by hosting three campus visitors related to that semester's theme. Each visitor presents a public event and engages smaller groups of students and faculty in ways that support the goals of COLL 300. Visits generally span several or more days.

Each visitor's public event parallels the semester's theme and stems from some aspect of their life other than scholarly expertise. This may take the form of readings, conversations, performances, presentations of general and scholarly interest, or some combination of all of these – or something entirely different. 

Below are descriptions for Campus COLL 300 visitors for the 2019-20 academic year.  

Visitors for Fall 2019 "Movement/Migration":
  • Muhammad Baqir: An Islamic teacher, philosopher, and Sufi master from South Jakarta, Indonesia, Muhammad “Pak” Baqir joined us to discuss notions of movement, migration, and pilgrimage in the context of modern Indonesia and Islam.  One focus of his teaching is on spiritual migration from the “world of appearances” to the “world of realities,” from the “material” to the “spiritual,” and back again.  Baqir has devoted his personal and professional life to preserving and adapting the paths of this spiritual migration in the context of Indonesian society’s cultural/intellectual/political migration into Western modernity.  Baqir was on campus September 16-19; the main event took place on Wednesday, September 18 at 5pm in Commonwealth Auditorium.  The video of his main event can be viewed at this link
  • Michael Gomez: As part of the commemoration of the 400th anniversary of enslaved Africans arriving in what would become the United States, the university is hosting the 10th biennial conference of the Association for the Study of the Worldwide African Diaspora.  Michael Gomez is the founder of ASWAD.  He has spent his career bringing together people who research the diaspora with those who constitute it.  Gomez' visit coincides with the ASWAD conference; he will be on campus November 4-7, with the main event on Wednesday, November 6 at 5pm in Commonwealth Auditorium.      
  • Nancy Frey: A cultural anthropologist by training, Nancy Frey has spent the past two decades guiding pilgrims along the Camino de Santiago, a medieval pilgrimage route ending in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.  Movement along the Camino is both physical and spiritual.  Nancy will share her perspectives on how those two types of movement have evolved with the rising popularity of the Camino, and in particular, the effect that mobile technology has on pilgrims and their surroundings.  She will be on campus November 11-14; the main event for Nancy's visit will take place on Wednesday, November 13 at 5pm in Commonwealth Auditorium.
Visitors for Spring 2020 "Scale": 
  • Ana L. Moore is Regents Professor at the Arizona State University. Prof. Moore research interests center on artificial photosynthesis with an approach that is mimicry of the steps used by photosynthetic organisms to convert solar energy into chemical potential. Her research group works on the design and synthesis of analogs of photosynthetic reaction centers consisting of tetrapyrrole chromophores covalently linked to electron acceptors and donors. She has been involved in many outreach activities and she is liaison and coordinator of collaborative research activities with Latin American Universities.  Concerning “scale,” her work epitomizes the way that scientists frame the massive problem of sustainable energy from not just a scientific perspective but also bringing in other approaches to knowledge. She represents how science grows from endeavors spearheaded by a single research project into an approach to problem solving on a global scale.
  • Andrew Farnsworth: The Cornell Lab of Ornithology works to interpret and conserve the earth’s biological diversity through research, education, and citizen science focused on birds.  One branch of the Lab is the Conservation Science Program.  The program interacts with individuals and communities to find solutions to problems that affect the entire hemisphere.  The program believes that “conserving birds and biodiversity in the 21st Century is a complex endeavor that requires innovative science and technology, a detailed understanding of biological and human systems, and the ability to implement sustainable solutions at global and local scales.”  A featured example will be the 9/11 memorial site in NYC, which has the potential to kill millions of migrating birds, but has been collaboratively managed to kill almost none. Other case studies will include coffee plantations in Colombia that save birds and farmer’s livelihoods, programs to increase participation in Nature activities by under-represented people, and engagement with the international community around climate change.  Andrew and the public-private collaboration to save birds at the 9/11 monument have been covered extensively by the media and Farnsworth has been very active in educating the public about the project.
  • Daniel Hernández-Salazar is a Guatemalan artist and activist that documents the aftermath of the genocide in his home country.  One of his most famous works, “So that all shall know,” addresses two key concepts of scale.  The first is the scale represented through taking the image and story of an individual and through that showcasing the horrors of political violence.  This local/global scale also manifests in his global exhibitions where his photography transcends geographic and temporal boundaries to bring attention to these issues.  Second is the application of scale in art.  His work with traditional, non-digital photography takes images on small negatives which turn in to massive murals.  While on campus, he will address the manipulation of scale both in the act of producing an image and in the ways that he displays his work.
Past Visitors