Volume 3 of Ideas continues the work of past volumes, introducing a different cohort of students to a new line-up of visiting scholars, activists and artists; it also brought together editors Fayth Schutter and Jada Johnson to co-produce this magazine, making it a truly collaborative effort.
The theme for this semester challenged our visiting scholars and students to reflect on how to prepare for a future after the pandemic, and provided an ideal vehicle through which to challenge conventional ideas and wisdom, break down stereotypes, and thoughtfully explore and understand the lived experiences of others. The last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the massive gaps and fissures that exist in society both globally and right here at home in Indiana. Challenges of inequity, health, economic and employment opportunities, racism, sexism, ableism and others have widened existing divides, and left large swathes of communities struggling. The preparations for interactions with visiting scholars this semester provided a welcome opportunity for students to examine these challenges and allowed them to appreciate different perspectives presented by both the visiting scholars and their peers.
Throughout the semester, VSP students discussed and debated the ideas of the distinguished visitors who presented their perspectives in both in-person and virtual formats. In addition to engaging with each visiting scholar, students also worked in small interdisciplinary teams to focus on one visitor and produce content for Ideas Magazine. This course and the magazine provided an ideal platform for students to explore cross-cutting and interdisciplinary themes of social equity and justice, particularly through the lens of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic. Students drew on assigned readings, personal experiences, speaker perspectives, and in-class interactions; they also conducted additional research to supplement any knowledge gaps to produce thoughtful and introspective essays that grapple with, and also explore in novel ways the ideas presented by the visiting scholars. These ideas have culminated in the Ideas magazine, presented in two formats. The first is a consolidated magazine layout, and the second, is our formal open access publication, hosted here on Purdue e-Pubs.
Dr. Ashima Krishna Associate Director, Purdue Policy Research Institute Assistant Professor of Practice, School of Interdisciplinary Studies