- Beyond the Classroom
- Speakers and Events
A big part of the campus experience is listening, discussing, and wrestling with ideas.
Throughout the year we host global leaders in fields ranging from dance to environmental
You'll get a chance to hear what these leaders have to say, and you’ll connect with
them in master classes, public lectures, and small-group discussions. We want you
on the podium, too—we have on-campus organizations and events that create opportunities for students to present their own ideas; topics can range
anywhere from cross-cultural relations to space exploration, and everything beyond.We'll also make sure you can access the local happenings of Great Barrington and the Berkshires, which have a vibrant and world-class cultural and arts scene.
At Simon’s Rock, our passion for learning goes well beyond the classroom. You’ll be
part of a community, that regularly gathers to learn, engage, and inspire.
W.E.B. Du Bois Lecture
We honor the memory of this native son of Great Barrington with the W.E.B. Du Bois Memorial Lecture—to be given each year on or near Du Bois's birthday,
February 23—which is presented by a distinguished African American whose own achievements
are in the tradition of Du Bois.
Read More about the Du bois Lecture
In further recognition of Du Bois's legacy the library is home to the W.E.B. Du Bois Collection in African American literature and history, and we have established W.E.B. Du Bois Scholarships for students of color who are underrepresented in higher education and have a record
of academic achievement.
Uncommon Journeys is a speaker series that celebrates the unique paths and exceptional
successes of Simon’s Rock alumni.
Brooke Skinner Ricketts ’97
Ricketts returned to campus September 2016 to talk about how she turned a BA in Politics
and Art History from Simon’s Rock into a successful marketing career. She has become
a highly sought-after brand strategist for some of the most exciting companies in
the world, including Twitter and financial-technology start-up Avant.
Photography by Alumnus Jan Staller '70
Famous for his study of urban and industrial landscapes in the Greater New York area,
Jan Staller '70, in conjunction with an exhibit of his work at the Hillman-Jackson
Gallery at Simon’s Rock, offered a talk on his life and work entitled “Regarding the
Read More About Uncommon Journeys
Book One Lecture
Every year Simon’s Rock selects a book that promotes interdisciplinary conversations
about the intersection of cultures. The author comes to campus to speak and offer
insight into the inspiration for, thinking behind, and creative process that resulted
in the book, as well as to give students, as well as the entire community, the chance
to ask questions of the author.
Learn More about Book One
The Book One lecture is one of many Simon's Rock campus traditions. Find out more about other campus traditions that run the gamut from somewhat conventional to downright quirky.
Symposium on Social Justice and Inclusion
Symposium week is an opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to take time to
reflect, discuss, and act on recurring and relevant issues related to social justice
and inclusion. The annual program, sponsored by the Council for Equity and Inclusion, offers special events and workshops that lead to student-driven conversations on
issues such as race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, immigration, sexual harassment,
and bullying, among others.
Learn more about the Symposium on Social Justice and Inclusion
Faculty forums offer faculty a stage to share their interests and pursuits outside
of the classroom.
Mapping Shangrila: Contested Landscapes in the Sino-Tibetan Borderlands
Chris Coggins, professor of Geography and Asian Studies, discussed his contribution to a book based
on his field research in western China from 2004 to 2011. Mapping Shangrila advances a view of landscapes as media of governance, representation, and resistance,
examining how they are reshaping cultural economies, political ecologies of resource
use, subjectivities, and interethnic relations.
Paintings in Song: Visions of Norman Rockwell
Composer John Myers, Stephanie Plunkett, chief curator of the Norman Rockwell Museum, and Christine Gevert,
Crescendo’s artistic director present “Paintings in Song:‘Visions of Norman Rockwell,’”
a multimedia work with choruses, instrumentalists, and graphic animation.
Listening with the Refugee
An interactive workshop hosted by the class Fugue States: The Politics of Refuge,
Exile, and Fugitivity. Participants in this workshop explored narratives surrounding the current “refugee
crisis” through practices of attentive listening. By the end of the workshop, participants
produced their own recorded stories in response to what they have listened to.
Read about Our Political Studies Concentration
ThinkFOOD started in 2014 and is a forum to bring thinkers, activists, entrepreneurs,
and community members together for discussions on a range of topics. The event is
a collaboration between the Center for Food Studies at Simon's Rock and the wider Berkshire community.
Find out more about thinkFOOD
Women and Leadership Summit
The Women and Leadership Summit, held at Simon’s Rock, connected students from Bard
College, Bard Microcollege Holyoke, and Simon’s Rock with ground-breaking women leaders
from western Massachusetts. The day-long program explored urgent questions about women’s
role in contemporary politics and everyday life.
Read more about the Women and Leadership Summit