Humanics at SC in 2002-2003: Observations of our Spirit by the Distinguished Professor of Humanics- Bernard J. Graney (c. 2003)
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This document titled “Annual Humanics Lecture” is the Humanics Lecture that was given at Springfield College by Distinguished Professor of Humanics Bernard J. Graney on April 30, 2003. Graney is a Professor of Rehabilitation and Disability Studies (RHDS) at Springfield College. Graney starts his lecture off with a Preface, in which he explains the creation of the “Ribbon Campaign” as a means to notice Humanics all year round, as well as his desire to further investigate the Spirit side of the triangle as other Distinguished Professors of Humanics have done in the past. Graney goes on to thank all of his colleges in the RHDS department as well as others who helped make his year as Distinguished Professor of Humanics and interesting and positive one. In his introduction, Graney defines Spirit as an essence that “reveals something we are striving for, and what we are, as well as our morale and our attitude set.” Graney goes on to state that at Springfield College, we are committed to our vision of education as well as striving for balance in our lives. As part of a global society, Graney reminds the audience of world events that took place between 2002 and 2003, such as the “War on Terrorism,” the first anniversary of 9.11.01, and scandals in the corporate world like Enron and WorldCom. Graney notes in the past, during WWII, the SC campus shut down to face such events, whereas in 2002-2003, we carried on. Graney goes on to discuss events that took place throughout the year such as meetings of the Spiritual Needs Committee (SNC), who identified war and peace as the most important issues of the day and organized a yearlong series of forums by experts, students, faculty, and staff to address these issues. He also reiterates the concept of the “Celebrate Spirit” Ribbons as well as other programs like the RHDS and New England Business Associates partnership called “school to work” that give students the opportunity to volunteer and/ or perform field work. Graney states his opinion of qualities that make up a good leader such as being a good listener, a desire to bring people together to work on common problems, a willingness to delegate, a desire to share and give others credit, a desire to see others grow, and a belief in the importance of outcome oriented shared visions. Graney next goes on to outline areas in most need of improvement. These are in communication, governance, organization and structure, finances, personal issues, and our college’s sense of our history and mission. In concluding his presentation, Graney summarizes key points related to Humanics such as to have an attitude of gratitude for things you do and especially for the support of your own volunteer actions at Springfield College, to have and maintain integrity as you participate in your own education and in your efforts to serve humanity, to be independent as a thinker and individual in your educational and service, and so on. As a means of concluding, Graney thought it would be interesting to compose a letter to communicate with one of our founders, Dr. David Allen Reed, to give a status report of our unique education at Springfield College in the 19th century. Humanics is a word that has a special meaning in the history and philosophy of Springfield College, as well as in the college’s motto of “Spirit, Mind, and Body.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines Humanics as, “the subject or study of human affairs or relations, especially of the human element of a problem or situation as opposed to the mechanical.” In 1962, Dr. Glenn Olds, President of Springfield College at the time, began to wonder why this name was given to the intended philosophy of the college by Dr. Laurence Locke Doggett, Springfield College’s first full-time president. Olds acknowledged that the practices of the faculty were in large part consistent with the Humanics philosophy, but he believed that a more self-conscious application would improve chances of its continuity and survival. To ensure this, a Distinguished Professor of Humanics position was created at the college, first filled by Dr. Seth Arsenian from 1966-1969. The purpose of this position was to catalyze a renewal of consciousness in the philosophy. This was done by annually mandating the Distinguished Professor of Humanics to give a Humanics lecture on the definition of Humanics and what the concept means to them. Arsenian started this tradition in 1967 with his speech titled, “The Meaning of Humanics,” in which he described the concept as a set of ideas, values, and goals that make our college distinct from other colleges and make commitment and unity toward commonly sought goals possible.
|Graney, Bernard J|
|Springfield College Archives and Special Collections|
Springfield College--Alumni and alumnae
Graney, Bernard J
Distinguished Professor of Humanics
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