Community Education

Speaker Series

Join us for our Speaker Series at Desmond Campus

The Innocence Project
This non-profit group works tirelessly to exonerate men and women who are convicted of crimes and locked up but are actually innocent. The speaker, Harriet Hendel, works as a volunteer with the project in Florida (and is a member of the Board of Directors) with a staff that works pro bono to free these people after investigating each case using DNA evidence. There are over 70 similar Innocence Projects throughout the US. Harriet Hendel will talk about specific cases and show a short film about the project’s work.
Monday, June 29 10-11 am H. Hendel Fee: Free

Esoteric History of Geography
A fascinating exploration into the nature of the Earth from the most ancient times to the present. Discover how the Earth has changed in form throughout human history, how different religions have envisioned the form of the world and how knowledge of the earth’s geography has been passed down by secret societies for thousands of years. Ultimately, it will be seen that the physical is a reflection of the spirituality underlying existence. (An expanded course version of this program is also offered — please see Explore and Expand section).
Tuesday, July 7 6:30-8 pm N. Rosenblum Fee: $15

The Secret History of the Solar System
Fascinating esoteric information is uncovered in this program revealing the extraordinary history of the solar system. Attendees will learn about the inhabitants of the various planets and moons, the secret space program, and how events on other worlds have had a profound impact on earth from ancient times to the present day. Also, it will be seen how the physics of electromagnetism have been central to events on Earth and the other planets in the solar system and the spiritual energies that underlie all of this. (An expanded course version of this program is also being given — please see Explore and Expand section).
Tuesday, Aug. 4 6:30-8 pm N. Rosenblum Fee: $15

The Voyagers: Grand Tour of the Giant Planets and Beyond
The farthest physical extent of the human race is represented by the two Voyager spacecraft – now over 12 billion miles from Earth. Launched in 1977, the Voyagers made history as they toured the largest planets: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, providing new vistas and data for hundreds of new discoveries. In the last twenty seven years, the Voyagers have continued their journey, exiting the solar system and into interstellar space. Data returning today from these venerable machines are still exciting scientists and astronomers, as well as amazing the general public.
Thursday, July 9 1-3 pm C. Holmes Fee: $15

Ventriloquism as You’ve Never Seen it Before
Do we have free will? Can we really be creative? In this interactive workshop, Shaun Johnston and two guests tackle these timeless questions as you’ve never seen them tackled before. The “guests” are actually dummies of Shaun’s own construction. He will operate them both at once so they can debate the issues for us. Every so often he’ll pause for discussion so we can share opinions and have our own questions answered by his guests.
Friday, July 31 10 am-Noon S. Johnston Fee: $15

New York, The Capital of Baseball
James Temple will chronicle the years from 1949-1953 when only New York teams were in the World Series. The format will be lecture, relying on the book by Roger Angell. There will also be group discussion, handouts, and archival footage from YouTube and DVDs.
Friday, July 17 10 am–Noon J. Temple Fee: $15

Bridge Music
As part of the 400th anniversary celebrations in 2009 of Henry Hudson’s voyage up the Hudson River, Bridge Music was created by recording the sounds of the Mid-Hudson Bridge’s surfaces (guard rails, girders, etc.) with various mallets and using those sounds to compose new works, making the Mid-Hudson Bridge the largest percussion instrument in the world. Composer Joseph Bertolozzi will tell you about this journey and you will hear the bridge’s sounds: music containing no other tones than those of the bridge itself.
Friday, Aug. 14 1-2:30 pm J. Bertolozzi Fee: $15

Stop at the Red Apple
Join Elaine Freed Lindenblatt, as she takes us back to the Red Apple Rest, her family's restaurant on NY Route 17. Revisit your fondest memories and create a few new ones, as Elaine tells what it was like to grow up in a business that never closed and served over a million customers annually. Her book Stop at the Red Apple will be available for sale and signing.
Monday, Aug. 24 10 am-Noon E. Freed Lindenblatt Fee: $15

Constitution Island
Located near the deepest section of the Hudson River across from West Point, Constitution Island is an important site of the American Revolution. Later, it served as the home of two prominent female writers, sisters Susan and Anna Warner. Hear the story of their writings, their triumph over adversity, their legacy and how the island became their unlikely home. The book will be for sale following the talk.
Monday, Aug. 31 6:30-7:45 pm R. Coffey Fee: $15

Local Native Americans
Join Gary Keeton for this slide presentation about local Native Americans from approximately 14,000 years ago to contact with Europeans. He will discuss the environment as it was at that period, what foods they would gather, basic technologies that they used in manufacture of stone, wood, bone and antler tools, and how this knowledge has been learned through archeological excavations over the years.
Tuesday, Sept. 15 1-3 pm G. Keeton Fee: $15

Sportswear for a New American Woman: Clothing of the Gilded Age
During the Gilded Age (1880-1903) in America, the spunky “Gibson Girl” no longer wanted the docile, proper life of her mother’s generation and many before her. She wanted to ride bicycles, play tennis and go sunbathing at Coney Island-and she wanted to wear clothing for this new active lifestyle. This dramatic shift in the way women dressed mirrored a changing middle-class at the onset of the Twentieth Century. A new set of fashion styles called “sportswear” showed an increased interest in public and personal health, a growing cultural engagement in sporting activities, and a burgeoning desire in upper and middle class young women for a more active lifestyle. Sportswear began to reflect the dramatic gender and social role shifts in the movement for women’s equality in the Twentieth Century, and would become the standard American dress style of modern life.
Friday, Sept. 18 1-3 pm A. Varga Fee: $15

Balancing Media and Technology in Family Life
Many parents, caregivers and educators are concerned about children’s screen use and potential impacts, but don’t know what to do about it. This series includes practical information and realistic strategies to help manage TV and other screen usage. Topics include: impacts of screen use on children and families, children as a “media market,” the effects of media violence including cyberbullying, “netiquette” and basic internet safety.
Thursday, Sept. 24 6-9 pm Cornell Cooperative Fee: $25/family

The St. John’s Bible
The St John’s Bible is the first Bible to be completely handwritten and illuminated in 500 years. Commissioned by St John’s Abbey in Minnesota, a team of international artists and calligraphers was coordinated by master English Royal scribe and artist Donald Jackson. The project took 15 years to complete and reflects the beauty and tradition of ecumenical Christian liturgy as well as Benedictine spirituality. In association with Mount Saint Mary College, which will be hosting several heritage volumes of the St John’s Bible during the 2015-16 academic year, the Desmond Campus will offer an introductory lecture on the history, process, and artwork accompanying the volumes. An additional “hands-on” workshop will be offered that will allow participants to create an artwork based on an illustration contained within this contemporary masterpiece. (Please see the Arts & Nature section.)
Wednesday, Oct. 7 1-3 pm, main Mount Campus L. Nicholls Fee: $20 (transportation provided)

Hidden Treasures of the Catskills
While New York's Catskill region remains popular for skiing, hunting, trout fishing and hiking, its history as a summer resort, which began in the 19th century and flourished when it was known as the Borscht Belt, stimulated a number of structures that today serve as remnants of an earlier time. Boarding houses and cottages that once attracted tourists from New York City, and the elaborate resorts that followed, tell the history of a remote region that was transformed into beloved summer colonies. While that era is mostly extinct, buildings that once served as railroad stations that welcomed tourists, smaller 19th century hotels that provided lodging, and local taverns that were the site of social and political functions, now exist as historic museums or are engaged in alternate purposes such as antique shops and other businesses. Learn about and discover a variety of sites that remain under the mainstream tourist destinations. Tony’s book is newly published and following his presentation there will be a reception to celebrate as well as a book signing!
Thursday, Oct. 15 10 am–1 pm A. Musso Fee: $15

18th Century Medicine: the Physician, the Silver Bullet, & the Revolution
Looking back upon the field of 18th century medicine, our minds are mostly filled with tales of malice, dangerous practice, and amputations. Although stories of local doctors may attest to those gory scenes, discover how some reveal a true concern for their fellow man or elevate others as heroes at a time of war. Examine artifacts, diary excerpts, and other primary sources that support the rich history of medicine in the Hudson Valley.
Thursday, Oct. 22 10-11 am K. Monti Fee: $10

Who Are We?
Join historian and educator Donald “Doc” Bayne at this program about a family who researched their ancestry, eventually discovering that part of their family came from Ireland as slaves. This presentation explores their struggle and hard work to adapt to a NEW life in a NEW world that grew into a NEW nation.
Monday, Oct. 26 10 am-Noon D. Bayne Fee: $15

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