McMaster School for Advancing Humanity to hold annual symposium April 11-12

April 3, 2018

D C President Mankey with guest speaker Jeremy Ball and Dean of the McMaster School Mary Ann StuderPictured left to right: DC President Richanne Mankey, Jeremy Ball, Dean of the McMaster School for Advancing Humanity Mary Ann Studer

DEFIANCE, Ohio - Defiance College’s McMaster School for Advancing Humanity will hold its fourteenth annual McMaster Symposium and Academic Colloquium April 11-12 on the DC campus. The theme will be “The Question of Individual Liberties as Critical to Improving the Human Condition.” All presentations are free and open to the public.

Wednesday, April 11, will begin at 7 p.m. with opening remarks from Defiance College’s President Dr. Richanne Mankey in Schomburg Auditorium, followed by keynote speaker Jeremy Ball, Defiance College alumnus.

In this presentation, Jeremy Ball will engage in a dialog with Mary Ann Studer, Dean of the McMaster School for Advancing Humanity, and the audience. Ball will talk about his experiences as a McMaster Scholar, a Service Leader, and a Defiance College student. This dialog will evidence the key aspects of his undergraduate experiences at Defiance College that prepared him to be a successful professional and inspired him to continue to contribute to the better of humanity.

Ball graduated from Defiance College with a Bachelor’s degree in Communications in 2004. As a student, he was named a McMaster Scholar to Jamaica (2002-2003) and a McMaster Scholar to Guatemala (2003-2004), during the first two years of the McMaster School for Advancing Humanity. 

Currently, Ball is the Director of Corporate Philanthropy and Events for the Fortune 500 retail corporation, Big Lots, and serves on the Board of Trustees at Defiance College.

Thursday morning’s symposium and colloquium schedule begins with opening remarks by Defiance College’s Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Agnes Caldwell at 8:30 a.m., which will lead into break-out sessions at 9 a.m. 

Morning sessions include the Panama, Belize, and local McMaster learning community presentations, and sessions entitled: “Collecting Digital Information: A Guide for Victim Advocates,” “From an Idea to a Reality,” “Are Our Brains Wired to Conform and Submit to Authority?,” “Inclusive Communities: Eliminating Barriers to Participation,” and “Undergraduate Research Methods: Experiences as a Co-Investigator.”

Lunch table discussions will focus on a variety of issues surrounding humanity in today’s headlines. At 1:30 p.m., break-out sessions continue. Additional topics will be presented such as “’It’s My Right:’ Issues with Symbolic Speech in America,” “Disaster Strikes… What Happens Months and Years Later?,” “Substance Use: An Intercollaborative Approach to a Community Issue,” “McMaster Impact Goes Local: Developing a Local Initiative,” and “Social Work Macro Practice: Communities and Organizations.” Senior nursing students will have poster presentations in the Schomburg Auditorium lobby.

There will be a visual presentation, “Design Makes a Difference,” from 2 to 3 p.m. in the Women’s Commission Art Gallery.

Distinguished Faculty member Dr. Doug Kane, Professor of Biology, will present “A Decade in Defiance: The Re-Eutrophication and Restoration of Lake Erie” at 3 p.m. in Schomburg Auditorium. His presentation will cover research and work that he and students have conducted during his decade at Defiance College.

Dr. Wendy Soltz, Krieger Visiting Scholar in Religious Studies, will speak at 4 p.m. on the topic “Beyond Swastika or Jim Crow: A Look at Jewish Scholars and HBCUs, 1900-1960.”

Break for dinner will be at 5 p.m., resuming with Honors Convocation at 6 p.m. and Divisional Awards at 7:15 p.m.

Also on Thursday, April 12, Defiance College students will be displaying their individual research and scholarship through poster presentations in Pilgrim Library and oral presentations in the Serrick Center.

For more information about the symposium and a schedule, go to

Defiance College, chartered in 1850, is an independent, liberal arts-based institution in Northwest Ohio offering more than 40 undergraduate programs of study as well as graduate programs in education and business. Defiance College has received national recognition for its educational experience of service and engagement. The college website is