Values, Ideas and the Arts (VIA) 

Values, Ideas and the Arts presentations enhance the Manchester Core program in the liberal arts through cultural exposure, artistic experience and intellectual enrichment. VIA features speakers, musicians and dramatic performers from the University community, across the country and around the globe. Manchester students earn academic credit through attendance. Members of the University community and the public are also invited to attend all VIA events. All events are free of charge unless otherwise noted.

The goals of the VIA program are to:

  • broaden students' cultural experiences,
  • enrich students intellectually and aesthetically,
  • provide opportunities to experience the arts,
  • promote dialogue about ideas and values, and
  • embody in its programs the values expressed in the University Mission.

Students are required to arrive on time and remain for the entire program to receive VIA credit. Events last approximately one hour unless noted otherwise.


Spring 2018

Be sure to check this schedule often for new VIA events and fuller descriptions that will be added.



MLK 50
Thursday, Feb.1

7-8:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
MLK50-180pxMLK 50 Remembrance & Rededication Ceremony
The Rev. Dr. Otis Moss, III, pastor of Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ, gave the keynote address: "Answering the Call." This is among many events throughout the academic year that celebrate MU's connection to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Watch the entire celebration.




Spring Convocation
Tuesday, Feb. 6
3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
President Dave McFaddenFly, Run, Walk, Crawl – Keep Moving Forward
Half a century ago, the Rev. Martin Luther Jr. encouraged those who heard him to “keep moving forward.” “Whatever you do,” he said, “you have to keep moving forward.” What does it take to meet that challenge in our time? President Dave McFadden will reflect on perseverance, doggedness, grit and passion in pursuit of those things we value most.

“If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” -- Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.



MLK 50
Thursday, Feb. 15

7 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Langston HughesOf Ebony Embers: Vignettes of the Harlem Renaissance
Manchester  celebrates the lives of great African-American poets Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen and Claude McKay in this unique chamber music theatre work. In this presentation by the Core Ensemble, one actor portrays multiple characters while interacting with the onstage musical trio of cello, piano and percussion. Jazz and concert music will be featured.





MLK 50
Thursday, Feb. 22

7 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium

Dr. David RaglandMartin Luther King and the Triple Evils: Grappling with Militarism, Materialism and Racism in our Time
Activist, educator and scholar David Ragland will speak about the meaning behind MLK’s words spoken Feb. 1, 1968, in the "Future of Integration" delivered at the North Manchester campus, just two months before he was slain. He died April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tenn., fighting for a wage increase for sanitation workers and preparing to lead a Poor People’s March in Washington, D.C. His struggles then continue today, Ragland says.





Rescheduled to April 24

The Crime Around the Corner: Human Trafficking and Slavery in Indiana





Thursday, March 1
7 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Joseph UscinskiConspiracy Theories are for Losers
Who believes in conspiracy theories and why? Why are some conspiracy theories more popular than others? What are the dangers of conspiracy theories? Are conspiracy theorists prone to violence? How did conspiracy theories affect the 2016 presidential election? What can conspiracy theories in the United States tell us about conspiracy theories elsewhere? Join Dr. Joseph Uscinski, an internationally recognized expert on the subject, will share his surprising findings.




Tuesday, March 6
3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Assessing Year 1 of the Trump Administration
Panelists include faculty members Leonard Williams, Benson Onyeji, Elton Skendaj and Tara Saunders. A scholarly examination of the past year in public affairs, both domestic and international.




Thursday, March 8
3:30 p.m.
Spiecher and Lahman rooms, Jo Young Switzer Center upper level
"I feel supported, but…”: The Voices of Underrepresented Students in Higher Education
Our presenter is Dr. Antonio Bush, assistant professor of educational innovation and research in the Division of Practice Advancement and Clinical Education and Assistant Director of the Office of Strategic Planning and Assessment at the University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy.




FYS VIA
Tuesday, March 13

3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Supporting Re-Entry and Preventing Recidivism: Initiatives for Indiana Prisoners
The speakers are Alexis Dean, executive director of re-entry and Medicaid, Indiana Department of Corrections; and Rick Rosales, community and mentor engagement, Indiana Department of Corrections. They will talk about the challenges facing ex-offenders in Indiana and the work being done within and outside prisons to help lower recidivism.



Thursday, March 15
7 p.m.
Jo Young Switzer Center, upper level
Andrew HammondPoverty Law's Past and Future
Andrew Hammond teaches at the University of Chicago and practices law at the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law. He will reflect on the past fifty years of anti-poverty efforts in America and what those efforts teach us about what to expect from our current political moment.




Tuesday, March 27
3:30 p.m.
Jo Young Switzer Center, upper level Speicher and Lahman rooms
Bridget MoixThe Power of Local People Building Peace
Dr. Bridget Moix is a celebrated American peacebuilder who is the U.S. coordinator of Peace Direct, an international peace NGO. 




Henney Lecture
Monday, April 2
3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Dr. Vivek MurthyA Nation in Pain: Understanding America's Opioid Epidemic
Join President Dave McFadden as he sits down for a discussion with Dr. Vivek H. Murthy, former U.S. Surgeon General, about opioids and what can be done about them.




Thursday, April 5
7-8:30 p.m.
Program is 90 minutes long.
Switzer Center, upper level

Elton SkendajActing the Change Through the Theatre of the Oppressed
Dr. Elton Skendaj and peace studies students will guide participants in a learning game in which they are presented with a case of social injustice and then try out various solutions until they agree on what should be done.





Thursday, April 12
7 p.m.
Jo Young Switzer Center, upper level
Kand McQueenGender Identity: Two Are Definitely Not Enough
This presentation provides a historical look at the topic and shows that cultures of the world have not always conformed to the notion that human beings come in two – and only two – opposite sexes.The lecture will also offer a nuanced perspective concerning those who do not fit assumed categories.




Tuesday, April 17
3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Sex & Politics: You Be the Judge
Panel discussion led by Jay Watts from the MU CARE Initiative, with students, community members, faculty and staff.




Senior Series
Thursday, April 19

7 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Peter ShepherdManchester to Marburg: One senior’s story of fulfilling and owning his best self 
Peter Shepherd’s educational experience and student career at Manchester University have been deeply guided by accomplishing his goals. Peter will discuss specific aspects mainly from his journey of accomplishing his goal of studying German and immersing himself fully through overseas study in Marburg,Germany. Peter will highlight how his major in professional sales complements his minor of German and how both helped to further explore his passions. He will draw on the interconnectedness of both fields, how literature, language and culture have affected his view of global citizenship, international business, and his own role within those areas. 




Tuesday, April 24
3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
The Crime Around the Corner: Human Trafficking and Slavery in Indiana
Human and sex trafficking is not just an international issue. It is a local crime that affects community members around Indiana. The Fort Wayne Police Department Victims Assistance Office partnered with with the MU CARE Initiative for this program. We will also discuss signs and prevention strategies to keep our friends, family, loved ones and community members safe. This program will be facilitated by Chelsea Crawford and Jo’Netta Neeley and will have opportunities for questions and answers.



Senior Series
Thursday, April 26

7 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
Katherine BrownBe the Good: Lessons from Nicaragua
There has been much talk in recent years about the rise of short-term mission trips and how some might ultimately harm those they were meant to serve. It doesn’t have to be that way. Senior Katherine Brown, who has twice taken part  in the Medical Practicum, offers insight into what works and what doesn't.




Tuesday, May 1
3:30 p.m.
Jo Young Switzer Center, upper level
Maria StephanWhere Civil Resistance Meets Peacebuilding: Synergizing Dialogue and Direct Action to Build Just Peace
Dr. Maria Stephan says you need both action and mediation – activists and peacebuilders – to reach a just and sustainable peace. Stephan will explore the nexus of nonviolent action and peacebuilding, offering practical guidelines for contemporary organizing and building movements.




Tuesday, May 8
3:30 p.m.
Cordier Auditorium
(Program is one hour, 30 minutes.)
Judd Case 2016Othopalooza: The Planet is Asking for It

The Otho Winger Experience features Manchester faculty, staff and students.