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Campus News / News

Announcing the Spring 2020 Forum Series lineup

01/13/2020 2:12 pm

The Rockford University Forum Series presents speakers and performances that are concerned with intellectual, social, and cultural matters of general interest to deepen and broaden students’ education at Rockford University. All Forums are open to the public and, with the exception of Performing Arts events, are free of charge. Lectures and performances will take place on the Rockford University campus, 5050 East State Street, Rockford. Tickets are required and can be obtained at the Clark Arts Center Box Office during regular hours of operation— Monday through Friday, 1- 5 p.m., as well as one hour before event at location of event. Contact the Box Office at 815-226-4100 or The Clark Arts Center is accessible.


Spring 2020 Lineup 


Orchesis & Rockford City Dance Concert

Thursday, January 23- Saturday, January 25, 7:30 p.m.

Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center

Produced in collaboration with various local artists under the direction of our new Assistant Professor of Dance, Lindsay Hawkins, in honor of Jayne Poor. Rockford University’s dance company, Orchesis, was originally founded by the late Professor Jayne Poor, who is remembered for her passionate dedication to dance as an artist and educator at our institution and in the Rockford community.


Emily Dickinson- How She Speaks to Modern Minds and Musicians

Friday, January 31, 12 p.m.

Fisher Memorial Chapel

Grammy-winning musicians explore Emily Dickinson and how she speaks to the composers, musicians, and minds of today. Through modern musical settings of her poetry, we will discover the historical context from which she spoke and how we too might speak truth to power in peaceful, poignant, and fearlessly individualized ways. Presented in collaboration with Mendelssohn Performing Arts Center.


You. Me. We.

Tuesday, February 4, 7 p.m.

Regents Hall, Student Burpee Center

An interactive program on racism, sexism, and LGBTQ issues especially for college students. You. Me. We. begins with a monologue that exposes the often-unintentional ugliness of prejudice, setting the stage for a lively discussion of diversity. The program follows students as they attempt to navigate the sometimes difficult terrain of multicultural campus relationships. During talk-backs, students can confront the characters and voice their own opinions on issues of racism, sexism, and LGBTQ issues. You. Me. We. is a 90-minute program that gets college students talking.


The Power of Human Interaction: Ken Nwadike, Jr.

Monday, February 17, 7 p.m.

Severson Auditorium, Scarborough Hall

Ken’s keynote address explores the power of positive human interaction and ways to bridge the racial divide by spreading love. The goal of this program is to create unity, civility, and build a more diverse and inclusive culture on campus.


Triumph of Love

Thursday, February 27- Saturday, February 29, 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, March 1, 2 p.m.

Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center

A chamber musical adaption of the classic French comedy of the same name, Triumph of Love is full of delicious deception, gender confusion and comic buffoonery. As multiple romantic story lines collided, the beautiful Princess Leonide and the handsome Agis must decide which is the more powerful force: the mind or the heart.


Charter Day- World War II Rescue Stories

Monday, March 2, 4 p.m.

Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center

This year’s Charter Day commemorates the 173rd anniversary of the signing of the charter for Rockford University. The annual event includes an academic procession of faculty in traditional robes depicting their rank, with stoles representing their respective alma maters and degrees. This year RU presents a theatrical reading highlighting our school’s role in saving WWII victims as drawn from the book We Are a College at War, written by three RU professors. Seven performers will portray five refugee stories.


Football Physics: Tim Gay, Ph.D.

Thursday, April 2, 12 p.m.

Peterson Auditorium, Starr Science

This talk discusses a series of one-minute physics lectures given to the fans that attend the University of Nebraska home football games. Lecture topics have included Newton’s Laws of Motion (blocking and tackling), projectile motion (kicking and punting), kinematics (open-field running), and the ideal gas law (why not fill the football with helium to get better hangtime?). Laboratory demonstrations have featured Professor Gay being tackled by a 370 pound lineman, pummeled with a sledgehammer as he lies on a bed of nails, and learning the finer points of passing from Heisman trophy winner Eric Crouch. The problem of simultaneous edification and amusement of the fan in the stands is considered. Dr. Gay’s visit is in partnership with Sigma Xi and the American Chemical Society.


Last Lecture

Tuesday, April 14, 4 p.m.

Fisher Memorial Chapel

The Last Lecture is meant as an honor to recognize a professor who is greatly admired by the campus community. By being honored, the professor is asked to give the lecture he or she would give if they knew it would be their last. Students will have the chance to vote for the professor they’d most like to hear give this lecture.


The Future of Climate Change: Harold Hongju Koh, Ph.D.

Thursday, April 23, 4 p.m.

Fisher Memorial Chapel

On November 4, 2019, President Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord in one year’s time. Where does that leave America and Americans in the ongoing effort to combat the harms of climate change? If, as French President Macron said, “there is no Planet B,” do we have a legal, political, and policy strategy to save this one? If so, what are its elements? Dr. Koh’s visit is in partnership with Phi Beta Kappa.



Thursday, April 23- Saturday, April 25, 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, April 26, 2 p.m.

Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center

A deputy mayor of New York and his wife have invited four couples to their Long Island home to celebrate their tenth wedding anniversary. When the first couple arrives, they find the hostess gone and the host lying upstairs with a superficial bullet wound. He is slightly incoherent. The first couple try to hide what they fear could be a scandal from the second couple to arrive. They in turn try to hide it from the third couple, and so on, until all of the guests are caught in a mad confusion of rumors and misunderstandings. This is Neil Simon celebrating farce in a true madcap fashion.


Denim Day

Wednesday, April 29, 7 p.m.

Regents Hall, Burpee Student Center

The Denim Day movement is a sexual violence prevention and education campaign. Rockford area leaders will discuss this campaign and sexual violence in relation to college students.