Explore UAlbany

Begin Your UAlbany Academic Journey!

August 27, 2016

Explore UAlbany is your opportunity to investigate a topic of interest while connecting with some of UAlbany's most outstanding faculty! The topic you choose does not have to be related to your intended major. To prepare for your journey on August 27th, review the sessions listed below and choose the TOP 3 sessions that interest you the most. You will only attend one session but if your first choice gets closed out it is important to have a backup chosen.

Students that participate in Explore UAlbany will receive their 2016-2017 Student Handbook and will have a chance to win exciting prizes!

Explore UAlbany Faculty Sessions to choose from:

Photography is Dead. Long Live Photography
(Or: How I learned to stop worrying and love Instagram)
Danny Goodwin, M.F.A.
What is photography, really? Since its invention in 1839, the term "photography" has been expanded to encompass a staggering array of technologies, techniques and media. The digital era has been described by many critics and theorists as "post-photographic". But what does that mean? How have artists who are working at the "bleeding edge" of photographic theory and technique informed and been informed by the digital (r)evolution? Explore with Prof. Goodwin some of the work of a group of young, emerging artists who are re-inventing the photographic language and staking out new territory as the producers of the next wave of visual culture.

Accounting and Law
The Law and U: Life lessons that will make you a better college student!
Joseph Sheehan, J.D.
Don’t learn life lessons the hard way by finding yourself before a city/town judge or judicial review board at UAlbany. Law Professor and City Court Judge Joseph Sheehan will discuss clear, simple, and sometimes hilarious, but always to the point lessons that will enhance your college experience. Let him show you how to make good everyday life decisions by learning from the experience of other people’s mistakes rather than making them yourself. Prof. Sheehan’s years of mentoring experience with two exceptional UAlbany freshman programs, the World of Business Living-Learning Community and the School of Business Direct Admit class, provide him with a rare insight into how to enhance your freshman experience.

Why Bigfoot Isn't Real: Fundamentals of Skepticism
Sean M. Rafferty, Ph.D.
In this lecture Professor Rafferty discusses how easy it is to be fooled, why people believe strange or impossible things, and how we can learn to be better consumers of knowledge.

Computer Scieince
You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet: How Cheap 3D Printers and Computers Are Radically Changing Our Lives
George Berg, Ph.D.
Many people think that personal computers linked together via the internet have changed the world. The real changes have barely started. Digital electronics have become increasingly small and inexpensive. This is leading to the use of cameras and sensors in ways that would have been impossible just a few years ago. We are starting to see practical robotic vehicles that can explore land, sea and air. In addition, inexpensive computing power and the ability to store truly amazing amounts of data mean that the data gathered by these devices, as well as just about anything else known about us, can be analyzed and scrutinized. We’ll look at several aspects of this. What are the technologies underlying these changes? What is driving the use of these systems? What are the implications for our safety and privacy?

Criminal Justice
Whither (Wither?) Capital Punishment: Is (And Should)
The Death Penalty In America Be Dying?
James Acker, JD, Ph.D.
The death penalty has been a staple of American culture since colonial days. Despite its august history, the past decade has brought such profound changes--in public attitudes, law, and practice—that many have begun to question whether capital punishment is a dying institution. We will explore the changing death-penalty landscape, identify the factors that appear to be responsible, and discuss- -and all opinions are welcome--whether capital punishment should or should not continue to be a part of America’s legal and social fabric.

Writing about Love and Loss
Jeffrey Berman
Love and loss is one of the oldest themes in literature. We will all experience wrenching losses, including the deaths of our parents and grandparents, best friends, and perhaps even our spouses and children. Prof. Berman will focus on the many reasons to write about the dead, including the effort not only to honor and memorialize them but also to bring them back to life verbally.

Is Race Real?
Richard Fogarty, Ph.D.
Of course it is! What a silly question. It’s as simple as black and white. Or is it? Like many subjects we think we know a lot about, we’ll find that the reality is far more complex and interesting than we often assume. Using examples and research from
a wide variety of fields of study, we’ll see that the “reality” of race—what it means in different times, places, and contexts—is far more subject to change, variety, and debate than many people think. Examining diverse ideas about race and the different forms racism has taken in different cultures, both in the past and today, we’ll see that “black and white” is only part of the story. This lecture is just one example of how your college education will take you deeper into everyday problems, broadening your horizons and challenging you to think in new ways.

Can you be a good journalist and a good human being at the same time? A talk about media ethics
Rosemary Armao
Journalists routinely invade the privacy, tell the secrets, and ask embarrassing questions of people they write about. Is that ethical? Is that nice? Are reporters moral? A talk on media ethics.

Political Science
Who Kills and Who Kills a Lot
Victor Asal, Ph.D.
Why do some organizations kill people while others do not? Why are some organizations so much more lethal than others? The majority of terrorist organizations kill no one while some organizations kill thousands. How does organizational structure, organizational ideology and government behavior towards organizations impact these decisions? Using data collected by undergraduates at UAlbany, professors at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy have analyzed organizational and state level factors to try and answer these questions- and some of the answers may surprise you.

Dude, Where’s My Cell Phone: Memories from the Ordinary to the Extra-ordinary
Jeanette Altarriba, Ph.D.
Have you ever misplaced your keys, forgotten someone’s name, or struggled to recall what you did last night? The phenomenon of memory reconstruction and the development of false memories and beliefs is a “hot topic” in cognitive and memory research. But just how can we demonstrate the existence of such memories? And, when we do forget, what are some techniques to try to remember? Learn about what the research tells us regarding false memories, their impact in your decision making, and what to do to decrease their prevalence.

Marijuana: Medicine or Menace?
Mitchell Earleywine, Ph.D.
Can cannabis cure cancer, Crohn's Disease, and cellulite, or is medical use just a ploy for legalization advocates? Come hear the Chair of the Executive Board for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws discuss the history, research, and hype surrounding medical marijuana.