On Nov 1-3, a group of 2013 Freedom Scholars and other distinguished TFAS alumni gathered for the last Curriculum of Liberty Seminar for the 2013 year. The seminar entitled “Civilization and Liberty” was a new curriculum co-developed by the Liberty Fund and Michelle Le (IPJ 95, AIPES 96) vice president of alumni affairs and international programs here at The Fund for American Studies.
The group of 12 students traveled from across the country to participate in the six-session conference held at the Hyatt in Arlington, Virginia. Each session explored topics that allowed students to examine the roots of liberty, the meaning of civilization within that context and its application in today’s modern world. Students were given required readings to complete prior to the conference to have a basis for the discussions. Authors included: Daniel Bell, Niall Ferguson, Milton Friedman, Francis Fukuyama, Ibn Khaldûn, Adam Smith and Hernando de Soto.
Dr. Bradley Birzer of Hillsdale College and Dr. Andrew Morriss of University of Alabama Law School were the discussion leaders for the weekend. Both Dr. Birzer and Dr. Morriss prompted the students to discuss the important issues that were raised in the required readings. They encouraged students to bring in their own narratives and experiences into the discussion.
These Liberty Fund seminars allow students the opportunity to discuss ideals and perspectives that are often neglected on their own college campuses. Students were overwhelmingly grateful for the opportunity to attend the conference. Kari Travis (IPJ 12) said, “I got to interact with an utterly amazing group of intellectuals this weekend. What I learned challenged me to keep looking beyond the obvious and continue seeking out only the most specific questions.”
Chelsea Whitman (IEIA 12) said, “I am immensely appreciative of my fellow participants, The Fund for American Studies and the Liberty Fund for this weekend’s stimulating discussions, thought-provoking debates and the best of company.”
The next Liberty Fund seminar will take place in February and participants will be the 2014 TFAS Freedom Scholars.
The 2013 Curriculum of LIberty Seminar “Civilization and Liberty” participants included:
- Collin Figley (CSF 12)
- Maxwell Kennady (IPVS 12)
- Daniel Ku (ICPES 12)
- Andrew Kugle (IBGA 12)
- Samuel Lamm (IPVS 12)
- Catherine McDonough (IPJ 12)
- Benjamin Pelt (IBGA 12)
- Matthew Phister (ICPES 13)
- Christine Smith (ICPES 12)
- Kari Travis (IPJ 12)
- Chelsey Whitman (IEIA 12)
- Kristopher Yingling (CSS 12)