Honors Program Rapid Response Salon on COVID-19: Black People, Racist Rhetoric, Violence

Cosponsored with the Tompkins County Office of Human Rights

Friday June 5, 2020  11 AM-12:15 PM in Eastern Standard Time (US and Canada)

Webinar registration details to follow and will be posted at ithaca.edu/honors


Dr. Christopher House, Department of Communication Studies

Mr. Travis Brooks, Deputy Director, Greater Ithaca Activities Center

Dr. Nicole Horsley, Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity

Dr. Kenneth I. Clarke, Director, Office of Human Rights Tompkins County

Moderated by Yolanda Clarke, Center for Academic Advancement and Department of Health Promotion and Physical Education

In partnership with the Ithaca College Honors program and the Tompkins County Office of Human Rights, join City of Ithaca community leaders and Ithaca College faculty in our latest Rapid Response Salon conversation that focuses on Black people, racist rhetoric, and violence in the context of the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police and subsequent protests across the United States and the world. Hear their insights in an engaging live format meant to offer considered commentary and community dialogue.

On the Retirement and Rewirement of Dr. Carla Golden

With this post, we honor and congratulate honors faculty member Dr. Carla Golden as she retires from Ithaca College. Since soon after the launch of the program, her seminars have inspired many students. She guided her students in engaging with critical ideas that pushed them beyond their comfort zone and formed an intellectual community in each seminar. We applaud her devotion to her students and her perpetual drive for teaching.

Please enjoy this heartfelt letter by Dr. Patricia R. Zimmermann in honor of Dr. Carla Golden’s retirement, read at the virtual Senior Celebration on May 19, 2020.

Carla Golden

The Ithacan “Instant facul-Tea – Carla Golden”

On the Retirement and Rewirement of Dr. Carla Golden

By Patricia R. Zimmermann

Dr. Carla Golden is the hardest person to connect with on the Ithaca College campus. And it is NOT because of the global coronavirus pandemic that rerouted all of our lives to our bedrooms and studies at home.

Especially if you are one of her close friends across decades of scandals, political actions, gossip, panels, discussions, and life changes, like I am.

She is hard to hook up with for a reason.

And that reason is Dr. Golden’s dedication to her students here at Ithaca College. And her dedication to the field of Women’s and Gender Studies, a program she has helmed and transformed here at Ithaca College.

In fact, full disclosure: it was not at all easy to get her to this Zoom event because she has been mounting many other Zoom events with her students, even though she has taught her last class forever on this campus, embodied or virtual  She was at one of those Zooms right before this one!

It took a lot of texts and cajoling on my part to yank her away from these students to get her here for this tribute to her decades of enormous and profound contributions to the Honors Program and to Ithaca College and to all of us.

Dedication is probably not the right word, as it sounds like an unbearable cliché  pirated from a popular culture click bait website for how to write a retirement speech for a retiring manager at the Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceutical  company.

Dr. Golden would fiercely critique this word—dedication– interrogating if it was an example of cis-gender, white, global north, hetersexist, classist privilege. If we were embodied, she would come very close to me, look me straight in the eye and say, Patricia, why are you using that word? Defend yourself and explain!

So Dr. Golden is not “dedicated” to her honors students and classes.

She does something much more significant and much less cliched.

Dr. Golden is absolutely and fiercely committed to the idea that intellectual life opens up a space for collective interrogation of every single presupposition or assumption any of us might hold, especially because a heterosexist, white, global north, male-gendered, hidden structure undergirds those presuppositions and assumptions.

She sees her honors seminars as intense, collective, and yes, sacred spaces where these vigorous and rigorous deconstructions can explode. She sees her seminars as places that yank students out of popular culture and neoliberal complacency into the riptides and storms of full engagement in the world of ideas and critique and intellectual community.

Dr. Golden was an early pioneer in our nationally regarded Honors program  here at Ithaca College. She started teaching in Honors in 1999—21 years of tearing students away from the accepted, the cliched, the normalized, and joining them on a journey to go somewhere else where equality and justice must be fought for continually.

She hacked out a path for anti-racist feminist work in seminars such as Sex, Gender, Desire; Human Nature and Culture; and The Cultural Production of Sex, Gender, and Desire.

If you have been her student in one of her legendary groundbreaking seminars, you know her passion for ideas materialized in the amount of time she spends grading your papers and writing voluminous comments on every idea. If you are a former student, you know her magnificent loyalty to alumni where you  transformed from students who get pages of comments to a friend who gets pages of emails.

Dr. Golden’s life, of course, exceeds her passions for teaching and for students.  She is a gourmet cook of cuisines from Korea, India, Mexico, Malaysia, Thailand, France, Morocoos, Lebanon, Syria.  She hikes. She bikes. She is one of the best Kremlin watchers of American politics and academic shenangins I know, a mix of gossip and intel and gusto. She has never missed a demonstration or political action on our campus or in the Ithaca community. She is a glorious friend and sister in arms.

I had a long phone call with her a few days ago, as I wanted to congratulate her on teaching her last class for her last seminar.

It was not easy to get her on the phone. She was busy grading, talking to students, Zooming, and, much to her surprise, overwrought with emotion cascading around and through her.  She told me, and I quote, because I wrote it down so she would not yell at me today, “I am consumed by teaching.  I did it well.  Nothing I do in my life form this point on will ever be this significant or impactful.”

Congratulations, Dr. Golden, from all of us in the Ithaca College Honors Program, on your retirement and your rewirement into a new life.

Two decades of students and colleagues in Honors have been spurred to move beyond themselves by your example of being totally consumed by pedagogy and ideas. You brilliantly and passionately understand  the urgency of people gathered in a class or on Zoom to tear apart the unknown and the oppressive to build something new, together.





Congratulations Seniors!

Congratulations to the Honors Class of 2020 for completing their undergraduate career and the Honors Program!

This past Tuesday, Alicia Swords and the Honors team hosted a celebratory zoom congratulating the Class of 2020. 

Honors Celebration for Seniors[1]

We honored the recipients of the Hugh Egan and Jim Swafford awards, played a slideshow that showcased some of their highlights, celebrated an honors faculty member who is retiring, and heard from some Honors faculty about their achievements. 

Hugh Egan founded the Honors Program in the Humanities and Sciences in 1995 and played an invaluable role in giving shape to what is today the Ithaca College Honors Program.  We give this award to honor Hugh Egan’s dedication to Honors and to celebrate a graduating senior who embodies his qualities of intellectual excellence, humor, amiability, and modesty.  

This year’s recipient is Andy Yzaguirre. Andy embodies generous, wide-ranging intelligence.  As a scholar of English, Andy understands and wields the power of words.  She also crosses disciplinary boundaries with ease.  In the senior seminar she often served as spokesperson–for herself, for her team, and for the whole class. Her accomplishments include presenting at the national Children’s Literature Association Conference in San Antonio, Texas.

The James Swafford award is given to a graduating senior who models the broadly read, deeply curious, and possessed of a rich, generous, wide-ranging intelligence that Professor Swafford fostered and modeled of the interdisciplinary identity of honors.  

This year’s recipient is Eliana Berger. Eliana is a bright, diligent, and critical scholar of gender, literature, and media.  Her senior seminar project on women’s roles in literature and media showed great intellectual flexibility, as well as depth of understanding. She presented her research on Gender Representation in Eighteenth-Century Periodicals at Oxford University. 

The Class of 2020 have presented research at national conferences, proven leadership to organizations and executive boards, been members of national honor societies, contributed countless volunteer hours, and much more. 

Congratulations seniors on your success! Go Bombers!


Ithaca College Honors Program Rapid Response Salon on COVID-19: Biotechnology, Evolution, Virology

Rapid Response 5.22 Image V2

Honors Program Rapid Response Salon on COVID-19: Biotechnology, Evolution, Virology

Friday May 22, 2020  11 AM in Eastern Standard Time (US and Canada)

Register here.


Dr. Kari Brossard Stoos, Associate Professor, Health Promotion and Physical Education

Dr. Scott Werneke ’06, Clinical Scientist, Exelixis

Dr. Brooks Miner,  Assistant Professor of Biology

Moderated by Dr. Stewart Auyash, Associate Professor and Chair, Health Promotion and Physical Education

In partnership with the Ithaca College Honors program, join our faculty and alumni experts in our latest Rapid Response Salon conversation that focuses on biotechnology, evolution and virology around the COVID-19 pandemic. Hear their insights in an engaging live format meant to provide expert commentary.


Dr. Kari Brossard Stoos is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Promotion and Physical Education at Ithaca College. Her teaching and research focus on pathophysiology of chronic and infectious diseases, infection control, bacterial resistance, and service-learning in health. Her teaching emphasizes story-telling by integrating science with human narratives to increase students’ capacity for social responsibility. She is part of a collaborative team developing a rapid test to detect pathogen contamination in seafood. Additionally, she is a co-investigator engaged in international research concerning primate health and development of conservation strategies.

Dr. Scott Werneke ‘06 is a Clinical Scientist at Exelixis, where he runs clinical trials in oncology. He earned his Ph.D. in immunology from Washington University in St. Louis, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at the Institut Pasteur in Paris. In 2015, Scott joined Genentech in the San Francisco Bay Area as a Senior Scientific Researcher in Cancer Immunotherapy, with an emphasis on immune cell trafficking and drug discovery. Following his time at Genentech, Scott led cross-functional teams as a Project Manager at Tecan Genomics.

Dr. Brooks Miner is an Assistant Professor of Biology at Ithaca College, where he conducts research on the ecology, evolution, and physiology of organisms that inhabit lakes and ponds. His broad interests as an educator have led him to develop interdisciplinary courses about topics such as the human relationship with alcohol and the environmental history of Alaska. He has co-authored thirteen peer-reviewed scientific articles, has contributed chapters to the bestselling undergraduate textbook Evolutionary Analysis, and has published data journalism articles for the website FiveThirtyEight.


Ithaca College Honors Program Rapid Response Salon on COVID-19

image001.pngRegister HERE

Friday May 15, 2020  11 AM in Eastern Standard Time (US and Canada)


Dr. Belisa González Associate Professor, Sociology and Director, Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity

Dr. Judy Griffin, Primary Care Physician, REACH Medical, Ithaca, New York

Yolanda Clarke, Manager of Tutoring Services and Department of Health Promotion and Physical Education

Moderated by Dr. Shaianne Osterreich, Associate Professor, Economics

In partnership with the Ithaca College Honors program, join our faculty and alumni experts in our latest Rapid Response Salon conversation that focuses on education, students, and teaching around the COVID-19 pandemic. Hear their insights in an engaging live format meant to provide expert commentary.

Dr.  Belisa González is Associate Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for the Study of Culture Race and Ethnicity at Ithaca College. She co-chaired the Atlanta Organizing Committee for Undoing Racism.  Her teaching and research focus on inter and intra group relations between African Americans and Latina/os across and within US communities of color. She has investigated cross-racial organizing efforts intergroup dynamics. She currently explores how Atlanta middle-class Dominican and Mexican immigrants experience discrimination. She co-created workshops on inequality in higher education, focusing on hiring inclusiveness and excellence, classroom micro-aggressions,  how to have difficult dialogues in the workplace.

Dr. Judy Griffin is board-certified in internal medicine and works as a primary care physicain and buprenorphine provider at REACH in Ithaca, NY. She serves as the Director of Research at REACH Medical and is the Director of the Rural Health Equity Training Collaborative (RHETC), affiliated with Cayuga Medical Center.  Dr. Griffinalso holds an appointment as a Clinical Instructor in Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College and is a member of the Criminal Justice-Alternatives to Incarceration Advisory Board for Tompkins County.

Yolanda Clarke is the manager of Tutoring Services and Program Director of the Emerging and Professional Leaders Program at Ithaca College.  She teaches “Inequalities in Health” in the Department of Health Promotion and Physical Education and has taught an Ithaca Seminar, “High as a Kite:  A Nation under the Influence.”  Yolanda has spent 30 years of in higher education.  In each roles, she directs special attention to historically underrepresented students. Prior to Ithaca College, she worked for the Monroe County Department of Social Services with unemployed families.  She is currently a doctoral student at the University of Rochester.

Honors Program Rapid Response Salon on COVID-19

Honors Program Rapid Response Salon on COVID-19:  Crisis, Elections, Muckraking

Rapid Response

Friday May 1, 2020  11 AM in Eastern Standard Time (US and Canada)



Dr. Thomas Shevory, Professor, Politics and Codirector, Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival
Rodrigo Brandao ’01, Director of Communications, The Intercept
Dr. Zillah Eisenstein, Professor Emeritus, Politics, writer, activist

Moderated by Raza Ahmed Rumi, Director of the Park Center for Independent Media

In partnership with the Ithaca College Honors program, join our faculty and alumni experts in our latest Rapid Response Salon conversation that focuses on crisis, elections, and muckraking around the COVID-19 pandemic. Hear their insights in an engaging live format meant to provide expert commentary.

Dr. Tom Shevory is Professor of Politics at Ithaca College, codirector of the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival and coordinator of IC’s Legal Studies Program.  He teaches courses in U.S. politics, environmental politics, and popular cultures. His most recent book is The Great Lakes at Ten Miles an Hour:  One Cyclist’s Journey along the Shores of the Inland Seas. His current research projects involve an historical study of Onondaga Lake, once known as “the most polluted lake in America,” and cycling several of the world’s great rivers in an exploration of ecologies, geologies, politics, and cultures.

Rodrigo Brandão is the Director of Communications at The Intercept. Previously, he oversaw media strategy for Kino Lorber’s feature films, and established Cinema Slate, a Latin American cinema label. At Kino Lorber, he executed campaigns for Finding FelaIxcanulMachines, and the Academy Award-nominated 5 Broken Cameras.  He has taught film publicity workshops and participated in film festival panels and selection juries. He serves on the board of directors at the Center for LGBTQ Studies at CUNY (CLAGS). Born and raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brandão  earned degrees from Ithaca College in Cinema and Photography (B.S.) and Art History (B.A.).

Dr. Zillah Eisenstein is a ground-breaking political thinker, writer, and activist always looking to find new anti-racist socialist feminist pathways. She is the author of more than twelve books and hundreds of articles detailing the continual struggles for social, racial, economic, environmental, gender, sexual, and bodily justice by women of all colors across the planet. Her newest book is Abolitionist Socialist Feminist: Radicalizing the Next Revolution (2019). She is Professor Emerita of Political Theory, Ithaca College, NY. Access her writings for Al Jazeera and Feminist WireScreen Shot 2020-04-29 at 3.56.12 PM