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Scholar Recognition Day Seminars March 4

March 4, 2023

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High Impact Experiences in Biology (Biology)

  • Tour biology research labs and visit with current biology students and faculty to find out about some of the high impact learning experiences that students are engaged in with Biology faculty.

Exploring Human Anatomy (Biology)

  • This seminar is a tour and hands-on experience with human cadavers. Current students will discuss their experience and show students the dissection laboratory. Students will have the opportunity to spend time in the laboratory and identify human structures.

Getting Up Close and Personal with Your Own Blood Cells (Biology)

  • Have you ever wanted to know your blood type or to see your own white blood cells?  During this lab seminar, you will get to do just that!  You will test drops of your blood using the agglutination technique, and stain a drop of your blood to view under the microscope.  We will also talk about how analysis of blood components is used in a clinical setting for diagnosis and treatment of patients. 

Superheroes as Equipment for Living (Communication Studies) 

  • Given the tremendous box office success of Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Extended Universe, this class considers the way superheroes contribute to our understanding of contemporary human life. Embracing the epic, the spectacular, and the speculative, how do superheroes invite viewers to enter a public dialogue concerning such wide-ranging issues of gender, family, and politics? To what degree does superhero media function as a parable, a narrative, capable of reinforcing or challenging cultural beliefs, attitudes, values, and norms? 

Curiosity May Have “Killed the Cat,” but Is It Good for Students? (Education)

  • The proverbial expression about curiosity is generally used as a warning against “prying behavior” that might get one into trouble; however, research has found that curiosity is vital to learning. Children enter this world exploring, asking questions, and discovering answers. Research shows that this intellectual curiosity is what separates “good” students from “excellent” ones. With this in mind, how can educators inspire or in some cases, “reignite” this innate natural need to know? Using hands-on activities, this seminar will invite students to engage in problem solving activities to inspire curious minds as elementary teachers in the K-8 classroom. 

Building a Beast: Writing a Mythical Creature (English)

  • Medusa, the Minotaur, Pegasus – these aren’t just mythical figures but potential characters. In this fun exercise, we’ll work together from a guided prompt to bring one such figure to life on the page in your own ongoing or brand-new creative project. Bring pen and paper! 

Luther’s Path to Carbon Neutrality (Environmental Science)

  • The numbers are in, and this year Luther College celebrates a 72% reduction in campus greenhouse gas emissions since in 2004. We achieved this accomplishment through a combination of energy efficiency improvements and renewable electricity generation and purchase. Much of the college’s remaining carbon footprint comes from burning natural gas to heat our buildings. What are the options for next steps as Luther continues to make progress toward complete carbon neutrality? Seminar participants will learn about the rapidly changing landscape in the clean energy transition both nationally and on campus as we discuss pathways to carbon neutrality.

 Law and Quest for Justice (Law and Values)

  • What is the relationship between law and justice?  How is our legal system being used to address the many challenges we face as a society?  Can law and the courts help to achieve racial justice and “planetary justice”?  Climate change and race relations are pushing justice to new frontiers that extend well beyond individual humans currently alive.  Is addressing these challenges and achieving justice possible within the individualistic framework of our legal system?  Seminar participants will learn about Luther’s newest major, Law and Values, while discussing recent legal cases and the justice questions they raise.

You Are Good Enough (Music)

  • Achievement is often conflated with the concept of self-worth. Particularly for creative types, you may feel like this in many spaces, but is this association real or is it a fallacy? Does success in the moment of performing a task, either musical or academic, actually equate with our worthiness? It often feels this way. This seminar would explore the moments of “peak performance” in all fields using music as an example. Along with working on detangling self-worth from achievement, we will explore how one might diffuse the ever-critical voice with the deeper and wiser voice who can be heard quietly whispering “You are Good Enough”.

K-Pop: Context and Criticism (Music) 

  • K-pop today is a multibillion industry with a massive global reach. But where did it come from? Why does it matter? We’ll look at some of the factors that set the stage for the global phenomenon, and we will also consider several aspects of K-pop under a critical lens: Western perceptions, fan culture, and more.

“Leave the Door Open” for Blue Magic: Bruno Mars and Anderson Paak’s Homage to TSOP (Music) 

  • This seminar will trace the lineage of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak’s hit 2021 song, “Leave the Door Open,” to Blue Magic’s 1970s hit “Sideshow,” with special attention paid to harmony and orchestration.

Practical Practicing; Optimizing Your Time for Optimum Efficiency (Music)

  • This discussion will include considerations and methods to improve the efficiency and productivity of student practice time. Measurable progress can be organized and intentional. Casual productivity is the result of a casual approach to practicing. This discussion will offer strategies for improving focus, structure, and effectiveness of practice time in both the  short and long term perspectives. 

Using Nursing Simulations to Save Nursing Lives (Nursing)

  • This seminar is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about Luther College’s Nursing Program and tour the nursing labs and simulation center.  Students will have the opportunity to practice nursing assessments and skills as well as observe a nursing simulation with a manikin.  Current students will discuss their experiences and help throughout the seminar.

At Home in the Milky Way (Physics)

  • The disks of spiral galaxies, like our home galaxy, the Milky Way, are thriving stellar neighborhoods where generations of stars pass their existence. We will use the Emil C. Miller Planetarium to see how stars and nebulae scattered throughout the Milky Way’s disk tell the story of stars, from producing heavy chemical elements and supernova explosions to promoting the formation of new stars enriched with these heavy elements. We will also investigate how the apparent distributions of stars, nebulae, open star clusters, and globular star clusters help us understand the shape and size of the Milky Way.

How Does Polarization Undermine Societies Around the World? (Political Science)

  • Polarization indicates clustering at the extremes rather than the center. In today’s society, extreme attitudes and behavior are often more rewarding than taking middle-of-the-road positions. In the United States, Democrats and Republicans not only differ in terms of their policy positions but also increasingly dislike and distrust one another. In a polarized environment, everything becomes political and divisive. In the absence of a common ground, societal fabric weakens and people are defined over their particular group identity. In this seminar, we will discuss the detrimental effects of polarization on societies around the world. This will help us situate the developments in the United States and understand polarizing dynamics in Latin America, Europe, and the rest of the world. 

Finding Happiness and Learning to Flourish (Psychology)

  • Finding happiness remains an elusive goal for many. Modern-day positive psychology offers considerable wisdom on how to find happiness and flourish in your daily life. Psychological science has shown that several virtues including gratitude, forgiveness, and humility can provide key avenues through which you can live a fuller and more meaningful life. Come learn more about how we can all lead a better and more fulfilling life.

Did God have a Wife? Gods and Goddesses in Ancient Israel and Judah (Religion)

  • In this seminar, we will explore archaeological evidence, ancient inscriptions, and biblical texts to learn more about the gods and goddesses that were part of the religion of ancient Israel and Judah prior to the emergence of monotheism.

Study Abroad Opportunities in Spanish–en Español (Spanish)

  • Hear ¡en español! about short-term and long-term study abroad opportunities in Spanish-speaking countries. Spanish majors and minors at Luther spend time abroad immersing themselves in language and culture. Faculty and current students will show you where our students go and what they do while studying abroad. You will also have a chance to share your own travel and study abroad experiences while practicing your language skills.

The Story of West Side Story (Theatre)

  • A brief introduction to the creation of the musical “West Side Story.”



March 4, 2023