More than 140 presentations exploring the theme "Meeting the Challenges of our Times: Risks, Responsibilities and Rewards" are scheduled for Coastal Carolina University's ninth Celebration of Inquiry conference Feb. 17 to 19. Celebration of Inquiry events are all free and open to the public.
The topic was chosen to focus attention on contemporary global concerns such as the economy, national security and ethical practices that have affected our world. Conference organizers also hope the theme will address personal issues that motivate us to think through the key elements of our decision-making.
The annual, university-wide academic conference features two days during which classes are redirected to specifically planned events and discussions. Many of the programs are presented and planned by students with faculty direction.
The keynote speaker is Richard Lapchick, author and expert on sports and social issues, who will speak on "The Challenges of Change: Ethics and Equality in our Diverse Communities" at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 17 at Wall Auditorium. He will talk about breaking the cycle of despair faced by too many of America's youth. By graphically laying out issues confronting so many young people, he encourages taking action on any level possible, whether it be one-on-one or with a larger group.
Other speakers include Sun News columnist and author Isaac Bailey, whose talk is "The Difficulty of Dealing with Race in a Diversifying World: Why We Must Rethink Everything We Know." Bailey will speak at 10 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 18 in Wall Auditorium.
For the first time, the Distinguished Teacher-Scholar Lecture, an annual event featuring a top Coastal Carolina University faculty member, is being scheduled as part of the Celebration of Inquiry. The 2010 lecture will be given by Var Limpasuvan, professor of chemistry, who will speak on "Diagnosing the Beating Heart of our Atmosphere: A Puzzle for Future Generations." The event is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 18 in Wall Auditorium.
CCU President David DeCenzo, Horry County Schools Superintendent Cynthia Elsberry and CCU Head Football Coach David Bennett are panelists for a plenary session on "The Challenges of Leadership in the 21st Century," scheduled for 10:30 a.m., Friday, Feb. 19 in Wall Auditorium.
The conference will offer sessions on many different topics, including "The War on Terror: A Definition of Victory," "Venomous Snakes of South Carolina," "Legalize It: the Case for Same-Sex Marriage," "The Young and Debtless," and "Finding a job in the REAL world." The event will conclude with a "Jazz After Hours" concert at 2:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 19 in Wall Auditorium.
All Celebration of Inquiry events are free, although Lapchick's talk will require a ticket. Tickets can be picked up at Wheelwright Auditorium.
For a complete list of events, visit www.coastal.edu/inquiry or call 843-347-3161.