Pitt-Greensburg Humanities Day

In the 1980s and 1990s, the Pitt-Greensburg campus hosted Humanities Day. Local high school students would come to the campus and compete in various areas, including writing and foreign languages; the latter included both recitations and dramatic skits. The event ended in 1998 with the retirement of the faculty member who organized it.

Here in the Provost’s Year of the Humanities, we are resurrecting Humanities Day as an annual event on our campus, restoring the foreign-language and writing competitions and adding the areas of fine art, music, theater, video, and rhetoric.

The event will take place on Saturday, May 5, 2016. Students participating in writing and video/short film competitions will submit their work for judging prior to this day. Other students will arrive, register, and have some time for last-minute rehearsals, and then perform in competition. Fine art entrants will hang their works for judging. After the lunch that would be provided by the campus for participants, teachers, judges, and student helpers, the competitions will continue, followed by a large group meeting in the dining hall. After some group games (including Shakespearean charades) to stoke the excitement (and rivalries) of students representing the various high schools, we will have a guest speaker on the topic of the value of the Humanities in education, and its applicability to all fields. The day will conclude with the announcements of winners in various categories and the awarding of certificates, a raffle prize, and competition prizes to the participants.

Also during the day, as an incentive for teachers to encourage their students to participate and to accompany their students, we will be offering workshops for the teachers to get Act 48 credit (Continuing Ed) credits. These workshops are now being organized, and may consist of master classes in theatre and music, and sessions in library and digital humanities searching, among others. Running concurrently alongside these events and the student competitions, various Pitt-Greensburg staff members in Admissions, Financial Aid, and Career Services will be providing informational sessions for parents. While these sessions will not be Pitt-specific, and would be designed as general information, we hope these, and the remainder of the day, will serve as a recruiting tool for Pitt and for our campus.

We hope that this renewal of Humanities Day will continue into the future; already, with a shared governance of the event, rather than organized by a single person as in its previous incarnation, it stands a strong chance to remain a vital annual event at the Pitt-Greensburg campus.

This event is also sponsored by Pitt-Greensburg's Academic Villages, Office of Student Life, Friends of the Millstein Library, and Department of Theatre Arts. For more information, contact Stephen Schrum at sas114@pitt.edu.


Saturday, May 7, 2016