MTSU fall Honors Lecture Series features ‘Friends,...

MTSU fall Honors Lecture Series features ‘Friends,’ ‘Youth Activism’

The MTSU Honors College will once again offer two fall lecture series, helping students grow in the area of critical thinking when hearing from faculty and outside experts.

“Youth Activism,” a concept developed by professor and Honors faculty member Mary Evins, takes place at 3 p.m. every Monday (except Sept. 5 for Labor Day and Oct. 10 for fall break) through Nov. 14 in the Paul W. Martin Sr. Honors Building Room 106.

Dr. Mary A. Evins, professor of history, coordinator of the American Democracy Project, member of the University Honors College faculty
Dr. Mary A. Evins
Dr. Rebekka King, assistant professor, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies
Dr. Rebekka King

“Friendship,” a model directed by associate professor and Honors faculty member Rebekka King, will be held starting at 2:40 p.m. every Tuesday (except Oct. 11 for fall break) through Nov. 8 in Room 106.

The Honors Lecture Series has been a staple each fall and spring for more than two decades, featuring topics and presenters from multiple disciplines on and off campus. To view both schedules — with dates, presenters and topics — go here

Mainly a class for students, both lecture series are free and open to the public, but with limited seating. Find a campus map here. Parking permits are required.

‘Youth Activism’ lecture series

Evins, a longtime Department of History faculty member and coordinator of MTSU’s American Democracy project, has assembled the “Youth Activism” topics and experts. 

“Guest speakers will approach ‘youth activism’ from a range of disciplinary perspectives, exploring some of the issues that have engaged and generated youth activism historically and continue to drive student activism in the present day,” Evins said.

“There is activism in art,” Evins added. “Activism in writing and poetry. Activism though music. Cultural activism. Food activism. Activism in the workplace. Economic, political, societal, environmental, gender, privacy, social justice activism.

“Examples of youth activism are replete. Both progressive and conservative youth engage in activism to speak out for what they believe in. Ultimately, history decides whether the cause to which we are committed and for which we act is just, true, noble, and morally righteous.”

Evins said the series “provides the opportunity and to explore some of the ideas and issues that motivate and inspire youth activism and that motivate and inspire MTSU students today.”

Honors College logo

Some of this class’s opportunities include voting, participating in campus Constitution Week programs and MT Engage Week programs.

‘Friendships’ lecture series

King, a religious studies faculty member in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, has coordinated the “Friendships” topics and experts.

“Together we will consider how friendship has been conceptualized in different cultures, historical periods, and milieus,” King said. “The invited speakers will approach the topic from a range of disciplinary perspectives.

Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies logo

“From Aristotle’s ‘philia of the virtuous’ to virtual connections in the digital age, we will question what it means to have, make, and be friends. How and why do we form friendships? How does it impact our social and cognitive development? 

“As a single concept, how does friendship simultaneously encompass both a close inner circle with whom we share our deepest vulnerabilities and a political rallying cry to inspire a nation? What is the value of friendship — especially with those different from us? And how does understanding friendship provide insight into broader questions about what it means to be human and live a meaningful life? These questions and others will be addressed.” 

— Randy Weiler (

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