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In conjunction with campus-wide events celebrating the university's bicentennial in 2017, LSA will sponsor two distinct theme semesters, the first (winter 2017) focusing on the university’s past and present and the second (fall 2017) examining the university today and the challenges it will likely face in coming generations. 

Winter 2017: Making Michigan

The winter 2017 theme semester addresses the university’s past and present, its “making” over time, since its 1817 founding, as a center for cultivating knowledge and creativity across an expanding array of disciplines and arts; as a force in public affairs locally, nationally, and globally; as a workplace; and as a way of life for its students, faculty, administrators, and staff. Courses and public events during the semester will emphasize change and continuity in university affairs as they have evolved over the whole course of the institution’s history—and will foster critical discussion of current issues in university life that excite interest among all members of its community. Broadly speaking, the theme semester will help students and faculty better answer the question, “Where are we today, and how did we get here?”

Fall 2017: Michigan Horizons 

The fall 2017 theme semester addresses the changing place of U-M today in American life and global society; the challenges and dilemmas before the university that are already evident or may be anticipated in coming years; and the varied ways and means—including alternative visions of fundamental reform—that can respond to present and future demands. Courses and public events during the semester will place U-M in the context of debates regarding the heritage and mission of public higher education and will examine the expectations and critiques that citizens, students, and scholars now bring to institutions like this one. Generally, the semester will encourage students and faculty to better answer the question, “Where are we now in dealing with present problems, and where do we go from here?”

Theme Semester Planning Committee

  • Elizabeth Armstrong, Sociology, Organizational Studies, Women’s Studies
  • Howard Brick, History (chair)
  • Christian Davenport, Political Science
  • Amy Harris, Museum of Natural History
  • Karyn Lacy, Afroamerican and African Studies, Sociology
  • Michelle McClellan, History, Residential College
  • Anthony P. Mora, American Culture, History
  • Gregory Parker, Eisenberg Institute for Historical Studies
  • Craig Regester, Semester in Detroit, Residential College
  • Priscilla Tucker, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Museum of Zoology
  • Donna Wessel Walker, LSA Honors Program
  • Stephen Ward, Afroamerican and African Studies, Residential College