Skip to content
open navigation


SVC Offers Timely New Courses this Fall

This fall, Southern Vermont College (SVC) is offering several new courses, including a class that examines racial bias and the criminal justice system, one that will explore the rich history of Bennington through multi-media stories, a visual arts class informed by the study of ancient texts and sacred symbols from a variety of cultures, and a course on the biochemical and physiological changes that allow animals and humans to live in and explore challenging environments. These Fall 2017 classes are open to current SVC students and to the public.

With the ongoing debate in the United States on the challenges facing police and communities of color, the upper-level course on Race, Police, and American Justice will incorporate local law enforcement and community resources into the class. The class, co-taught by Professor Tom Redden, Assistant Professor Renee Merges, Assistant Professor Judith Herzberg, and Mountaineer Scholars Director/Diversity Initiatives Ivan Figueroa, will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:10 a.m. to 12 p.m. starting August 29.

In Legends, Landmarks, and Adventurers, students will have the opportunity to explore the community around SVC and translate Bennington’s history into unique, multi-media stories. Students will utilize local resources and research this history through art, architecture, and historical sites to become inspired researchers, reflective historians, and visual storytellers. The course, taught by Professor Redden and renowned artist and teacher of digital design Barbara Ackerman, will be offered Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:35 p.m. to 5:25 p.m. starting August 29.

In Art, Text, and Sacred Symbol, Rabbi Jarah Greenfield will introduce art that is informed by the study of influential texts and symbols from a variety of cultures and moments in history, such as early alphabets, magic amulets, sacred geometry, illuminated manuscripts, tattoos, and emojis. Students will participate in the art-making process through literary and historical analysis, the study of fundamental principles of design, and reviewing works by contemporary artists dealing with concepts of sacred text and symbols. This course will be offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:35 to 5:25 p.m. starting August 29.

Life in Extreme Environments is the study of various organisms that have adapted to and thrive in so-called “extreme” environments. What enables a bear to hibernate during the cold of the Alaskan winter? How can the bar-headed goose fly over the towering Himalayas? How do Japanese pearl divers hold their breath and dive to such oceanic depths without suffering from the bends? This course will provide a comprehensive understanding of the biochemical and physiological changes that allow both animals and humans to live in and explore such challenging environments. These topics will be investigated by using prominent research articles in each field as a starting-off point, leading to student-led, online discussions and further individual research during which students will engage with each subject from a new perspective. This course will be offered online starting August 28.

There are many additional courses to choose from; the course schedule is available online at Admissions staff is available to answer any questions by calling 802-447-6300 or by e-mail at

Back to top