Previous HILL Courses



Fall 2019


Pops is Tops: The Life & Music of Louis Armstrong, Seton Hawkins, Director of Programs & Education, Swing University, Jazz at Lincoln Center

A History of Native America, Maeve Kane, Assistant Professor of History, University at Albany

Christianity: A History from the Reformation to Modern Times, Peter Bedford, John & Jane Wold Professor of Religious Studies, Union College

America’s Gilded Ages: Then, Now, & How They Differ, Mary Valentis, Visiting Associate Professor of English, University at Albany

Darkness & Light: The 20th Century & What it Means for Us, Richard Fogarty, Associate Professor of History, University at Albany



Spring 2019


Horror & Literature: What is a Monster?, Lisa Nevarez, Professor of English, Siena College

“A Song for All Seas,” The Life & Music of Ralph Vaughan Williams, Ann Marie Barker Schwartz, Director and Violinist, Musicians of Ma’alwyck

Topics in African American History, Melinda Lawson, Lecturer and Director of the Public History Program, Union College

Franklin Roosevelt, the Great Depression, and the New Deal, Andrew Morris, Associate Professor of History, Union College

Great Transformations in American Politics, Timothy Weaver, Assistant Professor, Political Science, University at Albany



Fall 2018


President Donald Trump & the 2018 Election, Bruce Miroff, Professor and Collins Fellow, Department of Political Science, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy, University at Albany

A Visual History of American Cinema, William Jaeger, Instructor of Art History, University at Albany

Modern Southern Literature & Identity, Billie Franchini, Interim Director of the Institute for Teaching, Learning, and Academic Leadership, University at Albany

Beyond Category: The Life and Music of Duke Ellington, Seton Hawkins, Director of Public Programs & Education, Swing University, Jazz at Lincoln Center

The Myth of the “Lost Cause”; The American Civil War Era In National Memory, Laura Wittern-Keller, Instructor of History, University at Albany



Spring 2018


The Cuban Revolution, Teresa Meade, Florence B. Sherwood Professor of History & Culture: Director of the Latin American & Caribbean Studies Program, Union College

Sound Ideas: Art & Society in Music Since 1990, Nancy Newman, Musicologist, Associate Professor & Chair, Department of Music, University at Albany

Russia and the Post-Soviet States, Ausra Park, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Siena College

New American Cinema: Films of the 1960s & 1970s, Rob Edelman, Lecturer, Department of Art & Art History, University at Albany

What Can We Learn from Shakespeare’s Kings?, Martha Rozett, Professor Emeritus, Department of English, University at Albany



Fall 2017


Judeophobia: The Ancient Origins of Anti-Semitism, Steven Stark-Riemer, Community Educator & Independent Researcher of the Archeology, History, & Religion of Ancient Israel

Fairy Tales: From Folklore to the Magic Kingdom, Jil Hanifan, Lecturer, Department of English, University at Albany

American Immigration Policy and Politics in the 21st Century, Robert Turner, Associate Professor of Political Science & Director of Environmental Studies Program, Skidmore College

Jazz 101, Seton Hawkins, Director of Public Programs & Education, Swing University, Jazz at Lincoln Center

China: Tradition & Transformation, Jenny Huangfu Day, Assistant Professor of History, Skidmore College



Spring 2017


The Music of Richard Strauss, Josef Schmee, Kenneth B. Sharpe Professor Emeritus of Management, Union College

1917-2017: World War I the Shaping of the Modern World, Richard Fogarty, Associate Professor of History, University at Albany

Big Trials in American History, Richard Hamm, Professor of History and Collins Fellow, University at Albany

French Art from Absolutism to Impressionism, Sarah Cohen, Professor of Art History and Women’s Studies, University at Albany

Apocalypse Soon! Studies on Views, Claims, and Fears About the End of the World as We Know It!, Peter Bedford, John and Jane World Professor of Religious Studies, Union College



Fall 2016


The Elections of 2016, Bruce Miroff, Professor and Collins Fellow, Department of Political Science, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy, University at Albany

The Rights Revolution, Ryan Irwin, Assistant Professor of History, University at Albany

Conquering a Musical Summit Previously Unknown: Compositions and Career of Gustav Mahler, Ann-Marie Barker Schwartz, Violinist and Director of Musicians of Ma’alwyck and Violinist /Glimmerglass Opera

Art, Nature and The Environment, Louisa Matthew, Professor of Art History, Union College

Latino/a Literature: Contemporary Voices, Lisa Navarez, Professor of English, Siena College



Spring 2016


The Civil Rights Movement of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Melinda Lawson, Senior Lecturer, Department of History, Union College

Explaining Political Violence, Victor Asal, Chair, Public Administration & Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, University at Albany

Classical Music as Narrative: Stories Without Words, Albin Zak, Professor of Musicology, Department of Music, University at Albany

What is African Art, Lisa Aronson, Emeritus Professor of Art History, Skidmore College

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
The Lost Mohawk Valley, Robert Cudmore, Author, Media Personality, Teacher

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
University Press Publishing and the Future of the Book, Donna Dixon & James Peltz, Co-Directors, State University of New York Press

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Flirting With Disaster: The Politics of Excessive Debt Accumulation, Zofia Barta, Assistant Professor, Comparative Public Policy, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Democracy and the Roberts Court, Steve Gottlieb, Jay and Ruth Caplan Distinguished Professor, Albany Law School

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
The Movie That Shocked New York: The Miracle, Sacrilege and Censorship, Laura Wittern-Keller, Lecturer, Department of History, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Jacob K. Javits and Latin American Unification, Salvador Rivera, Professor of History and Sociology, SUNY, Cobleskill



Fall 2015


Russia & Its Neighborhoods: The Ties That Bind and the Ties that Break, Katherine Graney, Associate Professor of Government, Director of the Gender Studies Program, Skidmore

Photography Now, William Jaeger, Instructor of Art and Art History, University at Albany

The CIA: From the Cold War to Terrorism, Tom Lobe, Lecturer in Political Science, Union College

The Archaeology & Meaning of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Steven Stark-Riemer, Community Educator and Independent Researcher of the Archaeology, History and Religion of Ancient Israel

Chaucer and His Companions: On The Road to Canterbury, Helene Scheck, Associate Professor of English & Director of Medieval Renaissance Studies Program, University at Albany



Spring 2015


The Holocaust, Causes & Aftermath, Barry Trachtenberg: Associate Professor of History & Director, Judaic Studies, University at Albany

You Eat What You Are: Explorations into the Religious Meanings of Food, Kirk Wegter-McNelly, World Visiting Professor of Religious Studies, Union College

A Song Without Words: The Music and Life of Composer Felix Mendelssohn, Ann Marie Barker-Schwartz, Director & Violinist for Musicians of Ma’alwyck & Violinist for Glimmerglass Opera

Roosevelt to Reagan: A Brief History of American Liberalism, Laura Wittern-Keller, Lecturer, History, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Russia the Crimea & Right- Bank Ukraine: Modern Paradoxes, Nadieszda Kizenko, Associate Professor of History, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
American Grand Strategy, International Order and Future Security Challenges, Raymond Kuo, Assistant Professor of Political Science, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
What Is Art, What Is Art Expression, Commodity, Disruption, William Jaeger, Instructor of Art and Art History, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
The Hudson River: Birthplace of the Environmental Movement, Robert Henshaw, Retired Adjunct Professor of Environmental Science, University at Albany and Bard College

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Gubernatorial Leadership in New York State: The Power to Persuade is the Essence of New York’s Political Tradition, Bruce Gyory, Senior Advisor, Manatt, Phelps, & Philips, Adjunct Professor, Political Science, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
“Freedom Now” to “Black Power”: Youth and the Transformation of the Civil Rights Movement, Melinda Lawson, Senior Lecturer, History, Union College



Fall 2014


Film Music, Film Sound & The Musical, Nancy Newman, Musicologist and Associate Professor of Music, University at Albany

The Mid-Term Elections of 2014, Bruce Miroff, Professor of Political Science and Collins Fellow, University at Albany

Art in the Court of 17TH Century Europe: “All The World is a Stage”, Sarah Cohen, Professor of Art History, University at Albany

Making the Modern World Since 1919, Ryan Irwin, Assistant Professor of History, University at Albany



Spring 2014


Contemporary Ethical Issues in Science and Medicine, Michael Murphy, Distinguished Professor, Emeritus, SUNY Cobleskill

The American Revolution: Causes and Consequences, 1688-1815, Bob Wells, Chauncey H. Winters, Professor of History, Union College

Reflections on Opera, Joseph Schmee, Kenneth Sharpe Professor of Management, Emeritus, Union College

Law In (and as) Literature, Randall Craig, Professor of English, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Beyond the Sacred Cow: The Life, Death and Significance of Cattle and Buffalo in India, Ray Bromley, Vice Provost for International Education & Professor of Geography & Planning, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Science and Religion: The Contemporary Debates, Kirk M. Wegter-NcNelly, World Visiting Professor of Religious Studies, Union College

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
New England Ablaze: A History of a Place in a Single Document, Eric Morser, Associate Professor of History, Skidmore College

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
What’s Behind the Curtain: Decision Making at the Federal Reserve, Mitchel Abolafia, Professor of Public Administration and Policy, Rockefeller College, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
Freedom of Speech on the Street, Richard Hamm, Chair and Professor of History and Public Policy, University at Albany

Spring Sampler: (Six Single-Session Classes)
After the Arab Spring: Charting a Course for the U.S. in the New Middle East, James Ketterer, Director of International Academic Initiatives, The Center for Civic Engagement, & Senior Fellow at the Institute of International Liberal Engagement, Bard College