Digging Deep into Philosophy

Student commenting in a Philosophy class

Explore the fundamental questions about ourselves and our place in society and the world.

Overview

Regis College’s Philosophy department offers a curriculum of study fostering exploration in ethics, social-political philosophy, and the history of philosophy. Our department’s work is deeply rooted in Regis’s mission and vision, and we see philosophy as primarily concerned with the question at the heart of Jesuit education: “How ought we to live?” From introductory courses to advanced majors seminars, students in Philosophy courses at Regis learn how to read difficult texts deeply and critically, how philosophy informs their engagement with the world, and how philosophy might be used as a tool in service of responding to injustice and suffering where it appears. Our unique approach is also evidenced in the department’s contribution to the broader curriculum of Regis College, and our commitment to supporting student excellence both in and out of the classroom.

Contributions to Regis's Core Curriculum

The Philosophy department serves students by offering courses in the Foundational Core, the Integrative Core, and other academic programs in the College. Our commitment to Ignatian principles animates the construction of courses and their delivery in the broad arc of a student’s academic experience at Regis.

The department contributes to the Foundational Core for first-year students. Our faculty teach both the “Writing Analytically” course in the fall semester, and paired sections of Philosophical Explorations (our introductory course) to small cohorts in the spring semester.

The department also develops courses for the Integrative Core for Regis College Juniors and Seniors. A sampling of recent course offerings include: Philosophy of Mental Health, Drugs and Society (Diversity); Globalization, Ecology, and Responsibility (Global Environmental Awareness); Liberation and the Dynamics of Transformation, Revolution and Resistance, Morality and Psychology of War, 1939, and Refugees-Resources-Resettlement (Justice and the Common Good); Love and Work, the Meaningful Athlete, The Science and Philosophy of the Mind, and Living Well, Living Rightly (The Search for Meaning). Each of these courses are linked to each faculty’s particular philosophical interests, but include engagement with broad bodies of literature, films, art, community-based and service learning, and insights of experts in relevant fields. A number of these courses are team-taught with faculty outside the Philosophy department.

The Philosophy department provides curricular support to the Regis College Pre-Law minor, the Regis College Honors program, and the Regis College Commitment program.

Regis En/Route Program

Faculty in the Philosophy department teach in and provide administrative support for the En/Route Program for first-year students. This program combines traditional classroom learning in the first year writing seminar (RCC 200) and second-semester communications-intensive philosophy course (PL 270C) with a year of service at a single community partner (activity for which students receive an additional credit hour). Students in this program serve and learn at Regis, as well as at community partners in northeast Denver and around Regis. Information about this program is available at http://enrouteregis.org.

Available Areas of Study

Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy

The Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy engages students in conversations and critical evaluation of multiple disciplines. Students are provided a broad knowledge of the history of philosophy, ethical theory, and areas of specific interest.  The program is also designed for those interested in attending graduate school, law school, other professional schools, or who simply have a love of philosophy.  Because of its size, the philosophy major is easily combined with other liberal arts majors.

Minor in Ethics, Politics and Society

The Ethics, Politics, and Society minor is designed to provide knowledge about these three areas.  It includes the option of a Philosophical Practicum course, which is designed to make connections between philosophy as a theoretical discipline and its real world applications.  This minor is particularly amenable to combination with other majors, including interdisciplinary majors such as Peace and Justice and Women and Gender Studies.

Minor in Philosophy

The Philosophy Minor is an unstructured minor that requires the completion of four upper level courses.  Because it is unstructured, students can select courses with a broad or narrow focus.  This minor is particularly amenable to combination with other majors, including those in Business, Science, and Health Care.



Learn more about our distinguished faculty by viewing the Department of Philosophy faculty profiles.

Philosopher's Stone Endowed Fund and Speakers Series

The Philosopher's Stone Endowed Fund supports the work of current Philosophy majors and minors. The fund underwrites the Philosopher's Stone Speakers Series, which enables to bring dynamic, nationally- recognized philosophers to Regis for public talks and seminars with Philosophy majors, offering students the chance to connect with scholars working in diverse areas of the discipline.

On September 22, 2016 the Regis College Philosophy department welcomes MacArthur Fellow and Philosopher Rebecca Newberger Goldstein. Professor Goldstein, whose most recent work Plato at the Googleplex: Why Philosophy Won't Go Away will offer a public talk beginning at 7:00pm. The event is free and open to the public.

Previous Events

2016

Maria Talero, Ph.D., Independent Climate Community Educator
"Social Mirroring and Climate Change"

2015

Alumni Roundtable, "Philosophy and Vocation"

Sarah Pessin, Ph.D., University of Denver departments of Philosophy and Judaic Studies
"Levinas: Agonism and the Other/s"

Lisa Guenther, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University 
"Lethal Injection and its Discontents"

2014

Jonathan Lear, Ph.D., University of Chicago 
"Examining the Irony of Radical Hope"

Cynthia Freeland, Ph.D., University of Houston
"Art and Medical Imaging Technology"

Theresa Tobin, Ph.D., Marquette University
"The Nature and Moral Significance of Spiritual Violence"

Recent Student Publications, Student Presentations, and Academic Service

Regis College Philosophy majors and minors receive encouragement and support for presentation and publication of their philosophical work in academic venues. 

Tayler Bunge (RC '16) and Erika Guynn (RC '14) have each served as members of the Assistant Editorial Board for STANCE: an International Philosophy Undergraduate Journal. Ms. Bunge worked on volume 9 (2016), while Ms. Guynn worked on volume 7 (2014).

Celesté Martinez (RC '15) published "Otherness and the Nature of the Multifaceted Self," in Res Cogitans (vol. 6, issue 1 [2015]). Material in Ms. Martinez's article was previously presented at the 2015 Pacific Phusikoi Undergraduate Conference at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon. Her article's abstract is available here.

Richard Spradlin (RC '16) published "Hood Politics: Racial Transformation in Hip-Hop" in STANCE: an International Philosophy Undergraduate Journal, volume 9 (2016). 

Life After Regis

Philosophy majors have the skills to undertake any professional activity. The critical reading, writing and thinking skills serve majors well in law, business, teaching, civil service, journalism, technology, and graduate school. Graduates of Regis's Philosophy department have successful careers in academia and law, in the non-profit sector, in the hospitality industry, and in IT. Alumni of Regis College's Philosophy department have been admitted to graduate programs in Philosophy and other areas of the Humanities.

Practicum

In connection with our Ethics, Politics, and Society minor, the Philosophy Department has developed the Practicum course as an opportunity for students to bring together their heads, their hearts, and their hands. Practicum combines a variety of readings with a student-developed, semester-long project integrating community-based and service learning with philosophical education. While the course is required for students in the Ethics, Politics, and Society minor, any interested student is welcome to participate. 

Course Projects

Spring 2016

Students in the spring 2016 Practicum examined possibilities for agency and responsibility by assessing the ways in which we are socially situated, how our social situation both enables and constrains our agency, and what responsibility that entails. Work with texts by Peg O'Connor, Iris Marion Young, and Lisa Dodson was supplemented by direct service with a number of organizations in the Denver area. Students developed an after-school philosophy club for fourth and fifth graders at Emerald Elementary in Broomfield, CO; served with community partners including Earthlinks, Community Educational Outreach, and the Bridge Project; worked in connection with the El Pomar foundation to develop an after-school program for students at John Amesse Elementary School; served with and organized a benefit for Denver Homeless Out Loud. In this class, students  put theory and praxis in dialogue with each other. 

Spring 2015

The spring 2015 Practicum took up a study of the Regis Square area and the area east of Federal Boulevard to determine possibilities for Regis's impact on the local neighborhood in ways consistent with the University's mission. Details of the study and its findings, titled For the Joy of Being Together, is available here: http://regiscultivateshealth.weebly.com/.

Spring 2013

Using resources of the Floodlight Project, students in the spring 2013 Practicum course completed a project titled Health (rather than Blight) in the Welton Corridor. In support of their study, students canvassed the Five Points district of Denver to learn what residents and community stakeholders felt was necessary for the area to thrive. The completed project is available here: https://www.floodlightproject.org/en/stories/health-rather-than-blight-in-the-welton-corridor/.