Final thoughts

Carolina faculty members share "last lectures" in annual speaker series

What would you share in a lecture if you know it were your last? That’s the question that more than 100 Carolina faculty members have attempted to answer as part of the Last Lecture series, presented by the Office of Fellowships and Scholar Programs and Scholars United.

Since 2000, students have nominated professors to deliver their last lecture in an environment designed to give students and faculty members an opportunity to interact outside of the traditional classroom setting. With topics ranging from whether and why to write a novel to taking the unexpected path towards the future, faculty members get the opportunity to discuss with students passions that might not necessarily be within their area of professional expertise. One of the goals of the series is to encourage students to see faculty members as not only teachers, but also as people.

The program aims to showcase the talent and passions of faculty members, connect traditional student activities with the pursuit of knowledge and encourage intellectual curiosity. Lecturers are both nominated by and chosen by students, and nominations are accepted on a rolling basis by email at

The fall 2018 lineup kicks off Oct. 3 with Kimberly Simmons, associate professor of anthropology and African American studies. Past president of the Association of Black Anthropologists, Simmons focuses much of her research on women’s organizations, Afro-Dominicanness, African-American culture and experience, and the cultural construction of identity in the African diaspora focusing on African-Americans and Afro-Latinos/as. Her lecture topic, however, is not yet announced.

The second fall lecturer will be Dan Buxhoeveden, an adjunct philosophy professor who teaches in the South Carolina Honors College. His lecture — the topic of which has also not yet been announced — will be Nov. 7. 

If you're going

All Last Lecture events are held at 7 p.m. in the Gressette Room of Harper College, located on the Horseshoe. Each event is free and open to the public.

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