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Great Lakes Theme Semester

LSA’s research takes place all around the world, but important learning and discovery also happens close to home. The Great Lakes Theme Semester held in Winter Term 2020 offered opportunities for students, faculty, and the public to join conversations about issues both critical to our region and relevant to national and international contexts.

Through courses, films, panels, exhibits, field trips, and other events, "Lake Effects" encouraged interdisciplinary exploration of how the environmental, political, and social issues facing our region have long been shaped by the Great Lakes, and how human activities continue to impact them in turn. This website serves as an archival record of the Theme Semester's activities and impact.

Featured Courses

The Theme Semester featured nearly 60 courses offered by departments across campus, many of which are being offered again in the 2020-21 academic year.


No upcoming events at this time.

Upcoming Event



Thursday, April 9th, 7pm:

Selections from Detroit Public TV's Great Lakes Now

The #LakeEffects Film Series is going digital!

To make sure you can stay healthy while enjoying fabulous Great Lakes documentaries and short films, we’re taking the whole FREE series online. All films will now be livestreamed over Zoom, starting at 7pm. Our guest speakers will be joining remotely as well, so you’ll still get the full film series experience — with your own bowl of popcorn in the comfort of your home or office.

While the on-campus screenings have been canceled, it’s easy to join remotely. Just use the Zoom link below to join the livestream with your computer, tablet, or smartphone, starting at 7pm on Thursdays from now through April 9. Save that link, because you can use the same for one each night of the series.

The digital #LakeEffects film series is hosted by Michigan Sea Grant, Detroit Public TV’s Great Lakes Now, and the U-M LSA Great Lakes Theme Semester. 



Show your Support

If you are looking for a way to support LSA students during this time, please consider making a gift to the LSA Student Emergency Fund.