Public Intellectual Initiative

Each fall semester the Higgins Labor Program invites a select group of intellectually inquisitive undergraduates to participate in the Public Intellectual Initiative. The format is simple. In the spring semester, the participants gather three times over dinner to discuss a book, with the titles suggested and voted on by the group. The goals are straightforward:

To encourage student participation in important public policy and cultural debates through engagement with timely texts.

To enrich undergraduate intellectual culture by sponsoring reading, reflection, and dialogue beyond ​course​ work.

To challenge the false binary separating college work from "real life."

To promote Notre Dame's mission to foster among students "a sense of human solidarity and concern for the common good."

Drawing together a diverse group of students from a variety of majors and life experiences, the Public Intellectual Initiative fosters intellectual inquiry, community engagement, and an expansive appreciation for the multiplicity of perspectives necessary to generate thoughtful answers to pressing problems.

The Higgins Labor Program provides the books and covers the dinners, with additional, generous support from Notre Dame's College of Art & Letters (a Teaching Beyond the Classroom grant).

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Upcoming Events

January 2022

Literally, Black@ND
Tuesday, January 18, 2022 - 7:00pm
Social Concerns Fair 2022
Thursday, January 20, 2022 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm
Virtual Postgraduate Service Fair
Tuesday, January 25, 2022 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm
Virtual Postgraduate Service Fair
Wednesday, January 26, 2022 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm
Labor Café First Friday
Friday, January 28, 2022 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm
Virtues and Vocations presents Mary Gentile: Giving Voice to Values
Monday, January 31, 2022 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

February 2022

Application Close | SSLP 2022
Tuesday, February 1, 2022 - 12:00am to 11:45pm
Signs of the Times Brown Bag Lunch Series | Education
Friday, February 4, 2022 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Proposal Deadline | Community Impact Grants
Monday, February 14, 2022 - 4:30pm

March 2022

Catholic Social Tradition Minor Open House & Info Session
Wednesday, March 16, 2022 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm