Virtual Learning Series Spring Term: Contemporary Issues in Society

One topic. Four weeks of immersive learning. That's the essence of the W&L Spring Term.

This year, we're inviting alumni, parents and friends to take part in this signature learning experience, exploring—like our students—some of the issues in the headlines today. In our four-part Virtual Learning Series, Associate Provost Marc Conner will sit down one-on-one with W&L faculty members to discuss their courses and answer your questions, providing food for thought during the lunch hour—or whenever you are free.

Segments will be posted on the pages below at noon Eastern time on Thursdays during the term and remain available to watch online at your leisure.

Join Us For:

The Resurgence of Russia: Richard Bidlack April 24, Noon (EDT)

Bidlack will discuss the rise of today’s Russia from the decline of the Soviet Union, its fragmentation into 15 republics and the devolution of authority within the Russian republic under Yeltsin to the remarkable reassertion of state power under Putin.

Healthcare Information Systems: Renee Pratt May 1, Noon (EDT)

Pratt will take viewers on the journey towards the electronic sharing of healthcare information and the successes and pitfalls along the way, exploring quality of care, patient safety and cost reduction methods from the perspectives of business, technology and medicine.

Genetic Engineering: Nadia Ayoub May 8, Noon (EDT)

Humans have manipulated genes for thousands of years to make better crops and domesticate animals. But in the last century, the ability to transfer genes from one organism to another--genetic engineering--has dramatically changed our understanding of biology and our lives. Ayoub will explain the nuts and bolts of genetic engineering, give a small sampling of its applications, and note the ethical considerations that they raise.

Digital Media and Society: Claudette Artwick May 15, Noon (EDT)

Facebook, YouTube, and iPhones are popular, if not essential, elements of college students' busy lives. Born in the digital age, students have grown up with profound and rapidly-changing media and communication technologies, apparently taking them for granted. Artwick will look at digital media and the relationship between technology and social change.


We welcome your questions for the professors. Please email them to by Monday, April 21.