Cool classes: Will Ferrell, wine and working out

Physics professor Jon Secaur teaches Seven Ideas That Shook The Universe and Physics in entertainment And The Arts online. “I try to respect my students’ intelligence and timeby only asking them to do projects that are worthwhile,” Secaur said.

Kelsey Wilzoch

We get it; college classes can be tough, but there is no reason you cannot take a workload off and take a cool class.

Seven Ideas That Shook the Universe, PHY 11030, is the most popular class at Kent State for undergraduate non-science majors. The class is defined as a “description of major revolutionary physical concepts and their implications for understanding the physical universe,” or in more simple terms used by professor John Barrick, “an average person with not a lot of science background can understand the topics of physics.” The class is a three-credit hour- full semester course and is taught by Barrick, Jon Secaur and a few other professors.

“I get a lot of students who are fearful of science because they don’t understand that the basics of science can be understood,” Barrick said. “[The students] like demonstrations … so while there’s a lecture course, we do a lot of demos, and they’re fun demos to explain a principle.”

Kaitlynn LeBeau, junior broadcast journalism major, said she took the course because she is not a huge science fan, and older Kent State students recommended the class.

“I’m not very interested in the sciences and my major has nothing to do with that field,” LeBeau said. “So finding a class that could keep me interested enough to maintain a good grade was important.”

Barrick said his favorite part about teaching the class is the students and their positive responses.

Geography of Wine, GEOG 31080, gives 21-and-older students an opportunity to branch out from younger students. Professor Anthony Carlucci teaches it as a three-credit-hour, full-semester course. Carlucci said in class he “reviews all aspects of wine — sensory evaluation, grapes, wine and food pairing, wine making, wine regions, ad health issues and wine lore.”

Carlucci is a professional winemaker as well. He also teaches Wines of Northeast Ohio and Wine and Food Pairing. Carlucci said he was asked to teach here 15 years ago and has since seen his classes grow.

“I often hear back from [students] and they really appreciate learning about wine and food in a fun and educational manor, and have become wine lovers themselves,” Carlucci said.

Carlucci said one of his students took Geography of Wine and it influenced him to become a professional winemaker. The former student has traveled the world as a winemaker, and it’s due in part to the class.

Carlucci said he loves hearing positive feedback from students and is very passionate about what he does.

A new class was recently added to the list for journalism: Will Ferrell, JMC 40095. Ronald Russo, adjunct professor in JMC, teaches classes such as Adam Sandler and Adult Swim as well.

Russo said in his Adam Sandler class, he concentrates on the chronological work of Sandler from his time at Saturday Night Live to present, and he will do the same in the Ferrell class. Students watch and analyze a film or TV episode each class. The Ferrell class, along with the Sandler class, both count as three upper division credits.

A few other cool classes that students enjoy at Kent State include:

  • Zumba (PEB 11665), Danielle Novotny;
  • Human Sexuality (HED 32544), Rachel Burnham and others;
  • Dance Exercise (PEB 13003), Jane M. Jindra-Parman and others;
  • Introduction to Glass Working (ARTC 25600), Scott Goss others.

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Many “cool” classes are offered at Kent State, so why not fit one into your schedule?

“You can tell the faculty put a lot of thought into [Seven Ideas] and how to keep students interested,” LeBeau said.

Contact Kelsey Wilzoch at [email protected].