Archive for Thursday, January 5, 2012

Learning opportunities flourish between semesters at Baker

Erin Joyce teaches a group of Baker University students the basics of French Wednesday afternoon. The group of students will be traveling to Haiti for Interterm. Joyce, Interim Assistant Dean for Liberal Studies, previously taught French at Baker.

Erin Joyce teaches a group of Baker University students the basics of French Wednesday afternoon. The group of students will be traveling to Haiti for Interterm. Joyce, Interim Assistant Dean for Liberal Studies, previously taught French at Baker.

January 5, 2012

Sixty Baker University students will be traveling to Europe, Chicago, New York and the Caribbean during the next three weeks, while hundreds of others will be staying in Baldwin City for the annual Interterm session.

Every year, undergraduate students at Baker University's Baldwin City campus spend three weeks in between semesters studying a subject out of the ordinary or traveling around the world. This year, six classes will be leaving the area while other students will be learning about basketball officiating, fly fishing or the truth behind Hollywood’s sports movies.

“The three weeks of interterm, especially the travel experiences, traditionally create everlasting memories for our students and alumni,” said Steve Rottinghaus, director of public relations. “Our students look forward to learning outside the classroom with these unique classes.”

Some Baker students will be traveling to St. John and Virgin Islands for a scuba trip, London and Paris to learn about art and Cooperstown, N.Y., to learn about baseball and its impact on American History. There is also a group traveling to Haiti as they volunteer at the site of the devastating 2010 earthquake, as they learn about social justice and service in the Caribbean nation.

The class that drew the most attention is Reel Sports, which is being taught by Lynsey Payne, assistant athletic trainer and instructor of sports administration. Payne is teaching 56 students about the true stories behind some of Hollywood’s biggest hits in the sports world.

“There are lots of students in it,” Payne said. “It's a very large class for Baker. I know that a lot of numbers in Interterm classes are up, because there aren't as many courses being offered.

“It's a pretty fun class,” she said. “I've taught Interterm since I came to Baker and I've taught several different classes. I have an interest in sports and I always find it interesting to find out what really happened in some movies. You wonder how much is true or is it just loosely based on a true story.”

On Tuesday, Payne and her students discussed the Walt Disney movie “Cool Runnings.” She said much of the movie is based upon actual events, including the climatic crash, which actually takes place before the finals.

Payne will also have her students learn about Jim Thorpe and Don Haskins' coaching tenure at Texas Western University, among others sports figures. At the end of the semester, the students will have to find a sports story that hasn't been told and write a script for a movie.

“It's a fun class,” Payne said. “With so many students at Baker being student-athletes, I thought we might see a lot of people interested in it, because of their sports' backgrounds. Hopefully the students enjoy it.”

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