Required for the LAS protocol and Leadership Minor is Philosophy 118 Moral Problems. I never thought of myself as a philosophical person but I soon realized that it’s beneficial to explore issues and theories in a philosophical manner. The topics discussed in class were utilitarianism, euthanasia, abortion, morality and religion, death penalty, sexuality, war, and many others. I had little to no knowledge about several of these topics, it was interesting to see how intricate and complex each of them were. I chose to write about euthanasia for our paper and before this course I hadn’t ever thought deeply about the issue let alone was I aware of the different perspectives and opinions that went with it. I learned that these issues play a big part in our society and everyday life.
My favorite part of the class was our professor, Dr. Gary Fuller. He challenged us to open our minds and explore all perspectives of each topic we learned about. I have to admit he was a little crazy at times but was nonetheless able to keep us engaged and entertained throughout the semester. Dr. Fuller did a great job of communicating ideas that were hard to understand in simple ways through story telling and metaphors. He challenged us to build on our communication skills by assigning oral presentations and essays. Within these assignments we were instructed to explain and stand for opinions different from our own which is not an easy task. This furthered my ability to put myself in others’ shoes and acknowledge others’ beliefs. At the end of semester our professor invited the entire class to his home for a Christmas party consisting of pies and Christmas carols played and sung by none other than Gary Fuller himself. It was a great way to end the semester, we had so much fun all the girls got together for a picture in our ugly sweaters (see the pic above).
Most of the issues we talked about were controversial and touchy subjects. More often than not, people avoid having these types of conversations but it’s important to be able to converse about difficult subjects and communicate an opinion. Along with that, learning to respect other opinions and perspectives is also significant. In every career or position there will be problem solving and while most of the issues I noted earlier do not have concrete solutions, Philosophy can help us think about problems in a more fundamental way. These skills will benefit me as I continue to hold leadership roles and communicate with different types of people.