A Lecture Series presented by the Daniel and Margaret Carper Foundation

The President’s Forum on Critical Thought is an important component of the multifaceted programming supported at EWU by the Daniel and Margaret Carper Foundation. The Carper Foundation is a  longtime supporter of EWU students with numerous scholarships. In 2009, the Carper Foundation extended its support to fund a Chair named in honor of Daniel Carper’s mentor, EWU professor and Provost, Jeffers R. Chertok. The Chertok Chair was awarded to Georgia Bonny Bazemore, PhD, associate professor of ancient history.

As part of Bazemore’s Chertok Chair responsibilities, she is tasked with teaching one course per year, now called “the Chertok Course.” These Chertok courses are designed as an advanced lesson in the most rigorous of the liberal arts tradition. The Chertok courses are designed to promote the ability to critically analyze the strengths, merits and weaknesses of controversial ideas and theories, or those that clash with mainstream or common belief. Further, while the subject matter is ideational or theoretical, students explore the practical implications and application of these ideas in current events.  The Chertok courses are designed and implemented to explore the most difficult and provocative problems of our day.

It was to supplement the Chertok courses that the idea originated to invite the authors being discussed in class to campus to speak to the students themselves. It is in this spirit that Bart Ehrman, Steven Pinker, Jared Diamond and Robert Sapolsky have been invited to EWU. Each of these scholars’ works have been read with keen interest and the students’ education is greatly enhanced with this interaction. Through the generosity of the Carper Foundation, EWU also brings these exciting speakers to Spokane, to speak to the community.

Through the continuing scholarship program, The Chertok Chair, the Chertok Courses, along with the President’s Forum on Critical Thought, it is evident that The Daniel and Margaret Carper Foundation has established and maintains an exciting and dynamic program unique to the area and devoted the students of Eastern Washington University.

Upcoming/Previous Speakers

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