Save the Date
5th Annual January Symposium: Wednesday, January 27 – Friday, January 29, 2016
Our theme this year is “On Leading a Life of Meaning and Purpose.” An odd theme, you might think, given that previously this symposium has looked at, for example, “Social Entrepreneurship and Social Justice” and “Social Entrepreneurship and the Future of Public Health.”
So why discuss lives of meaning and purpose over three days in January at Middlebury? It turns out that at the heart of social entrepreneurship is this truth: the most effective changemakers, as they go out and try to make a difference, have a rich sense of self; of what matters to them and why. And yet to really explore this question – what matters to me? – is not only a challenge; it’s a life-long pursuit. As we engage the world over the years – as we fail, as we succeed – we readjust often our assessment of our own identity and agency. In time we learn, as Walt Whitman so succinctly wrote, that each of us “contains multitudes.”
As Middlebury enters a new era for global liberal learning under President Laurie Patton, we and our partners thought that it was a good time, in this liberal arts setting, to help students to begin to reflect on their emerging lives and to share tools about moving forward in search of meaning and purpose. As summarized in this program, we have a wonderful array of colleagues lined up for this, from our inspiring Vision Award winners to many faculty, staff, and students. We welcome you here and look forward to your active participation.
For materials regarding past January Symposiums, please see our Archives here.