LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 19, 2004) -- An interdisciplinary arts and cultural tour of New York City and an on-site examination of Australian public health issues are among the innovative offerings of the University of Kentucky’s first Winter Intersession.
On- and off-campus, traditional and Internet classes, as well as travel learning courses are available in the Winter Intersession beginning Dec. 20, 2004, and ending Jan. 11, 2005.
“UK joins other colleges and universities – including our benchmark schools -- in offering these compact sessions,” said UK Provost Michael T. Nietzel. “The Intersession is designed to assist students in balancing academic loads, progressing toward graduation, and experiencing enrichment courses and educational travel. It ties closely to UK’s new Graduation Agreement.
“Universities and colleges offering winter intersessions have found that students and faculty welcome the opportunity to immerse themselves in intensive study of one subject over an abbreviated period of time; on that basis, intersessions have rapidly become very popular,” Nietzel added.
Among the more than 30 colleges and universities offering a brief academic term between fall and spring semesters are Cornell University in New York, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of Maryland at College Park, and the universities of Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware and Iowa.
The New York City trip is a part of FA 501, “Big City Discoveries: Contemporary Arts in New York City,” an interdisciplinary arts course developed and taught by Heather Freeman, assistant professor of new media in the Art Department of the College of Fine Arts; Diana R. Hallman, associate professor of musicology in the School of Music; and Robert W. Haven, assistant professor of costume technology in the Department of Theatre.
Among the students enrolling in FA501 is Karen Greasley, a UK senior majoring in theatre. “It will be intense, but it will certainly be worth it,” Greasley said about the class and the New York City trip. The Lexington Dunbar High School graduate who would like to work in theatre in New York after graduation, said the action-packed course and the trip “span all the arts and should prepare us for our futures as graduates appreciating, and particularly working in, the fine arts.”
“The Winter Intersession could be a truly unique opportunity for experimental education,” Freeman said. She participated in a similar undergraduate program at Oberlin College where students spent the month of January pursuing independent research.
Regarding the “Big City Discoveries” class, Freeman said the students will get first-hand experiences with artwork, music and theater in New York that would be impossible to acquire otherwise. “I'm certain that the course will inspire the students to come back to Kentucky and excite the arts at UK,” she commented.
The Australia trip, open to UK graduate students, begins after Christmas as part of a class in epidemiologic and health systems’ issues in Australia. It will be taught by Steve Fleming, professor in the College of Public Health.
Also among the 16 classes offered by six colleges in UK’s inaugural Winter Intersession is a film course by English professor Armando Prats, tilted “Hollywood at War: From ‘Troy’ to ‘Black Hawk Down’.”
“This is an academic opportunity,” Prats said. “It is intense. By the end of the second day you think that you have known the students for a long time. The daily plan is to show a movie of no more than two hours, break for 10 or 15 minutes, and go immediately into lecture/discussion. I expect to assign an additional three or four movies to be screened outside of class.
“There will be no compromise with the quality of the instruction,” Prats continued, “and the course will be no less demanding than any regular semester course.”
Sarah Sizemore, coordinator of summer and extended sessions in University Extension, which administers the new academic term, said, “Winter Intersession is very economical and advantageous to students.” Students pay $198 per credit hour regardless of their status. Except for travel courses, no fees are charged.
From Dec. 20 to Jan. 11, free parking is available for Winter Intersession students only in the Scott Street parking lot and in the lot north of College View Avenue near Memorial Coliseum.
Sizemore said, “ UK’s first Winter Intersession provides students with new opportunities for enrichment and early graduation. This year’s courses will attract many students. Offerings and enrollments will expand rapidly in years to come.”
Detailed information on Winter Intersession courses and faculty is available at www.uky.edu/UExt/winter. Enrollment is open to UK students and the community. Current UK students can enter as nondegree students and must be admitted by Nov. 1. For assistance, call UK’s Summer and Extended Sessions office at (859) 257-3382 or visit University Extension at 103 Frazee Hall.