Poetry as Enchantment

Annual Humanities Symposium
& a Paideia Seminar

When: Friday, April 21st at 5pm

Where: University of Pennsylvania

Join Collegium Institute and undergraduates across Philadelphia for this final session of Enchantment and Disenchantment in the Modern Era.  For our closing seminar, we will examine Poetry as Enchantment, under the esteemed direction of poets Prof. James M. Wilson and Chaplain Chaz Howard.  Through a poetry reading and discussion of literary criticisms, Dr. Wilson and Dr. Howard will guide us in an exploration of poetry, religion, and philosophy.

Please direct questions and RSVPs for this dinner to Elizabeth Feeney at

Information about past sessions in this Paideia series may be found here.

As poets and scholars, this month’s guest speakers explore ideas of inspiration through the medium of poetry.  Dr. James Wilson (Villanova) blends his poetic work with his scholarship in religion, literature, and philosophy, while Dr. Chaz Howard (UPenn) enlists his various chaplaincy experiences from hospitals to universities to examine the human experience.

Professor James M. Wilson

James Matthew Wilson is Associate Professor of Religion and Literature in the Department of Humanities and Augustinian Traditions at Villanova University.  An award-winning scholar of philosophical-theology and literature, he has authored dozens of essays, articles, and reviews on subjects ranging from art, ethics, and politics, to meter and poetic form, from the importance of local culture to the nature of truth, goodness, and beauty.  Wilson is also a poet and critic of contemporary poetry, whose work appears regularly in such magazines and journals The New Criterion, Dappled Things, Measure, The Weekly Standard, Front Porch Republic, The Raintown Review, and The American Conservative, as well as in his six published books of poetry and scholarship.



Chaplain Chaz Howard

Dr. Chaz Howard is the University Chaplain at the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to his service at Penn, he served as a chaplain in hospice and hospital and as a street outreach worker to individuals experiencing homelessness in Philadelphia. His writing has been featured in such publications as Black Arts Quarterly, Black Theology: An International Journal, Daily Good, Christianity Today’s Leadership Journal, and Slate.  He is the editor of The Souls of Poor Folk, which explored new ways of considering homelessness and poverty and The Awe and The Awful, a poetry collection, among others.   He shares life with his beloved wife, Dr. Lia C. Howard and their three daughters.  He sees his vocational calling to be to work for a communal increase in joy, peace, justice and love.



A New Moral Culture on Campus?

3rd Annual Penn Club Lecture



When: Tuesday, April 18th at 6:00pm

Where: Penn Club of New York

30 W 44th Street, New York, NY

Join Collegium  for cocktails, hors d’ouevres, and a lecture on

A New Moral Culture on Campus?


Professor Jonathan Haidt, Ph.D.

Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership
Leonard N. Stern School of Business
New York University

Registration Required.  Please RSVP HERE.  Please direct any questions or comments to Elizabeth Feeney at


Jonathan Haidt joined New York University Stern School of Business in July 2011. He is the Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership, based in the Business and Society Program. He received a B.A. in Philosophy from Yale University and a Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania.

Professor Haidt is a social psychologist whose research examines the intuitive foundations of morality. His most recent book is the New York Times bestseller, The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion. He co-founded the research collaboration at His next book will be titled Three Stories About Capitalism: The Moral Psychology of Economic Life. His writings appear frequently in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and he has given four TED talks. He was named one of the top global thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine and Prospect magazine.


On Caring for Depression in our Patients and Ourselves

an Open Conversation about both Illness and Wellness

A How to Heal luncheon

When: Thurs, April 20, 1-2:00pm

Where: Jordan Medical Education Bldg, 503

This month, guest speakers Dr. Phil Gehrman, (Penn Sleep Center) and Dr. Richard Summers (Co-Director of Residency Training and Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, UPenn) come together to share how their ultimate sense of life and of human flourishing influences how they understand and treat depression.

This series in Medical Humanities is a monthly luncheon seminar that invites students across the healthcare community to engage with veteran practitioners and faculty on concrete, clinical issues that prompt more fundamental questions: what does it mean to heal? how does one measure wellness? how do doctors and nurses determine when their responsibility for making someone well is complete?  How is the flourishing of patient and caregiver related — or not?

RSVP to Program Coordinator, Elizabeth Feeney at elife@sas.upenn.

Information about past luncheons can be found here.


Dr. Phil Gehrman, Ph.D.             Dr. Richard Summers, MD 

Fourth Annual Anscombe Lecture in Ethics

When: Wed, April 5th, noon-1:30pm

Where: Terrace Room, Claudia Cohen Hall

249 S 36th Street

The Annual Anscombe Lecture in Ethics commemorates Elizabeth Anscombe (1919-2001), former Penn Professor of Philosophy and one of the most influential woman philosophers and Catholic intellectuals of the modern era.  


Sir Roger Scruton


Art and Morality: on the Relationship between Aesthetics and Ethics

This year’s lecture is cosponsored by the Penn Departments of Philosophy and History, as well as the Program for Research in Religion and Urban Civil Society (PRRUCS).

Lunch provided. To reserve your place, register HERE.  For more information, contact Elizabeth Feeney:

Sir Roger Scruton

Eminent writer and philosopher, Prof Sir Roger Scruton has for over three decades taught at institutions on both sides of the Atlantic including Birkbeck College, Boston University, and more recently, the University of Buckingham. He is an author of over forty books. In his work as a philosopher he has specialized in aesthetics with particular attention to music and architecture. He has written several works of fiction, as well as memoirs and essays on topics of general interest. He engages in contemporary political and cultural debates from the standpoint of a conservative thinker and is well known as a powerful polemicist. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and the British Academy. He has been officially honoured by the Czech Republic, by the City of Plzen and by Virginia’s General Assembly. In 2004 he received the Ingersoll Weaver Prize for Scholarly Letters. In 2015 he published 3 books all of which were chosen among people’s ‘books of the year’. In 2016 he was recipient of the Polish Lech Kaczynski Foundation’s Medal for Courage and Integrity, was awarded the Italian Masi Prize for the Culture of Wine in recognition of his book I Drink Therefore I Am (Bevo, dunque sono), and was knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

CwtC Module V: On Science, Faith, and Culture: Conflict and Reconciliation

When: Wednesday, March 15, 22, and 29

Where: Harrison College House

How can ancient creation narratives be understood in light of modern astrophysics?  What does the experience of the founder of modern physics (Galileo) actually reveal about the relationship between science and the church?  Or the experience of the founder of the Big Bang Theory (LeMaitre) reveal about the relationship between science and the state?  How is religious belief still possible for scientists in the modern age? Has Cosmology become the “Religion for Intelligent atheists?”

Join us on a great adventure as we journey through intellectual history exploring the relationship between science, faith and culture.  Through a discussion of very brief but momentous texts, we’ll be asking ourselves deep and searching questions about the interaction of science and religious belief and about how this relationship has been portrayed, accepted and rejected in popular culture in times past and in the present day.

This informal dinner seminar is directed by Penn astrophysicist and Collegium Faculty Fellow, Dr. Marisa Cristina March.  Please contact with any questions. All dinner and texts provided.

Caring at the End of Life

a New Medical Humanities Series

When: Tues, Feb. 28th at 12:30pm

Where: Jordan Medical Education Building, RM 504


This new series in Medical Humanities is a monthly luncheon seminar that invites students across the healthcare community to engage with veteran practitioners and faculty on concrete, clinical issues that prompt more fundamental questions: what does it mean to heal? how does one measure wellness? how do doctors and nurses determine when their responsibility for making someone well is complete?  How is the flourishing of patient and caregiver related — or not?

Caring at the End of Life
Dr. Kristen Carey-Rock
Assistant Professor of Clinical Anesthesiology and Critical Care

University of Pennsylvania

To RSVP, contact Elizabeth Feeney at



Kristen Carey Rock is an Assistant Professor in Anesthesia and Critical Care, and a practicing anesthesiologist and intensivist at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. She has written articles on bioethics in the Penn Bioethics Journal and The Ethics of Embryo Adoption and the Catholic Tradition: Moral Arguments, Economic Reality, Social Analysis (Springer, 2008).

Faith in Media?: a Veritas Forum

When: March 23rd at 7:30pm

Where: Harold Prince Theater

Annenberg Center

3680 Walnut Street


The event, Faith in Media?, developed as a Veritas Forum, will address the university’s annual theme — Media — through the lens of faith.  At this student-focused discussion, professors—including Dean Michael Delli Carpini of the Annenberg School of Communication, the Frances Yates Professor of Communication at the Annenberg School Carolyn Marvin, and Emory University Professor and PBS Commentator Andra Gillespiewill reflect upon a variety of questions at the intersection of media and faith, including society’s faith (or lack thereof) in the media’s standard of neutrality and objectivity, the media’s role in covering divisive issues, and its ability to accurately and fairly represent different faith communities.  The panelists will also reflect on how faith communities engage with the media, both institutionally and through the choices or predilection of individual faith-abiding reporters.  The forum is a rare opportunity for students to hear their own highly respected professors address Penn’s annual theme not just from their academic specialization, but from their personal experience and convictions as well.  


RSVP HERE to attend this event.  Any questions or comments may be directed to Elizabeth Feeney at

Our Presenters

Dr. Andra Gillespie








Dr. Michael Delli Carpini






Dr. Carolyn Marvin





Dr. Lia Howard



Read more

CwtC IV: Literature and the Catholic Imagination

When: Sundays, 2/12, 2/19, 2/26 at 7:30pm
Where: Penn Newman Catholic Center

You can learn a lot of theology from a short story.

Join Collegium and the Newman Catholic Community this February for three late dinners/informal seminars before the late Sunday Mass.

Together we will read and discuss short stories that every Catholic should encounter, featuring authors such as Flannery O’Connor, Madeleine L’Engle, Graham Greene, Georges Bernanos, G.K. Chesterton, and Andre Dubus.

Catholic faith opens our imagination and expands our vision of the world.  Ordinary flesh and blood becomes pregnant with spiritual possibility. What do Catholics believe about nature and creation, sacrifice and fulfillment, morality and community, love and redemption?  And what can we learn about who we really are, and how we are to live?  The Spirit can move in literature, revealing itself in a glance between two characters, in the way a person moves or speaks, in the way that the light falls. And a great author can capture it all in a short story…

Come read some stories with the Collegium Institute’s resident theologian,

Dr. Christopher Roberts

February 12, 19, and 26 in the Newman Center seminar room at 7:30.  Concludes before 9pm Mass. Cost is $20 for the 3-part series.  Registration includes Pizza, Texts, and Professor.  To register CLICK HERE.

Limited to 20 students.  Interested students may join the wait list by contacting Elizabeth Feeney ~  No prior knowledge or experience required for this beginner’s seminar, open to undergraduate students from all schools and levels.

Morality & Markets: the Catholic Perspective

April 26, 2016 at Penn Club of New York

Morality & Markets: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Perspectives

Last year, Collegium and First Things invited Penn Alumni to a panel discussion on moralities and the markets.  Presenters included Dr. David Skeel and Dr. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde of the University of Pennsylvania, Eric Cohen of the Tikvah Fund and First Things, and Dr. Atif Mian of Princeton University.

Here, Dr. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde writes of the Catholic perspective which he presented that night.

Penn Club Remarks: the Catholic Perspective

by Dr. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde

CwtC Module III: Friendship, Then & Now

When: Wednesdays, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8 at 6:00pm

Where: Harrison House

“He who has friends, has no friend.”  This observation, perhaps lament, was derived not out of the Facebook generation, but rather out of Greek antiquity.  In his foundational treatise on Ethics, Aristotle reflected on the value of personal friendship, on what it takes     to count someone else a good friend and on what one might need to give up in order to be one.  And of course on whether it is possible to have many friends.  His conclusions have been continually absorbed and challenged over two millennia, addressing questions about human relationships that appear quintessentially modern. In this preceptorial/ informal dinner seminar, students and a faculty guide will read and discuss brief but momentous texts on friendship.  Among the great thinkers featured include Aristotle, Cicero, Chaucer, Montaigne, Emerson, Thoreau, Keats, and others.  Of course no papers or exams are required at the end!
Coffee with the classics is coordinated by Collegium and hosted at Harrison College House.  These three discussion seminars on Friendship will take place on Wednesday evenings, 6pm-7:20, on 1/25, 2/1, and 2/8.  Dinner is available at 5:45pm and is included with all texts to registrants.  Both beginning and experienced students from all schools are welcome.  Registration is limited to seminar-size.
Register at for texts and dinner.