Just because a program changes hands, does not mean it has to change goals.
For several years the Perspectives Program at Eastern has served to stimulate the intellectual and often spiritual side of students with compelling speakers and videos. The program also has a very specific goal in mind. “The nice thing about this program is regardless of who is in [my] position, the program continues to be unbiased,” says Molly Johnson, head of the program.
Johnson took over the program from Coordinator of Student Activities Ben Howard. Though it has been difficult early on, Johnson says she looks forward to forming more relationships with speakers and sponsors in order to further expand the program in the future.
Even so, things have been running smoothly this year and the program has seen several highlights and strong student engagement. The program, which takes place twice a month, experienced its strongest showing right at the beginning of the Fall semester, when it brought President Robert Duffett before the school to address students and answer questions regarding his controversial letter signing several months before. Another highlight came with the showing of a video called “Very Young Girls,” a documentary about women who were implicated in human sex trafficking at incredibly young ages.
Something that was not done quite as often before Johnson took over was partnering with Eastern clubs and organizations. Johnson says that collaboration is something she loves to do and hopes to form even more partnerships going forward. This year, she has already had events sponsored by SAHT (Students Against Human Trafficking) and Talent and Career services. Any clubs interested in sponsoring an event need only email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Of course, the one guiding principle for this program is and always has been its unbiased stance. As important as it is to stimulate students’ spiritual and intellectual development through discussion, that can never be fully done if only one side of every issue is shown. Johnson puts it this way: “Students are able to hear two or more professionals who have differing views, so students can engage on things in a way that is respectful and honest.”
So rather than being content with your own beliefs, perhaps it might be better to allow the Perspectives Program to show you a new perspective.