Citizenship, Institutions, and the Public
President Jonathan Holloway's 2023 Byrne Seminar for first-year students is designed to heighten understanding of the roles and responsibilities of citizenship and will feature conversations with distinguished leaders on critical questions related to citizenship.
We live in an era of extreme political polarization, increasing social instability, and declining faith in the nation’s institutions and the virtues of civil discourse. How might we, as individuals, chart a path out of this troubling state of affairs? What role can we play in confronting the accumulating challenges in our society? What should we reasonably expect of our institutions and what do these institutions owe us? What are our responsibilities to be good civic actors when we are confronted by a public discourse that appears uninterested in speaking to our common values?
President Holloway addresses these questions through a series of conversations with distinguished leaders from the corporate, political, nonprofit, media and faith communities during his fall 2023 Byrne Seminar, "Citizenship, Institutions, and the Public."
Seminar Guests and Videos
A pioneering social entrepreneur, Rajiv Vinnakota serves as president of the Institute for Citizens & Scholars, leading its mission to cultivate the talent, ideas, and networks that develop lifelong, effective citizens. Watch an excerpt from President Holloway's conversation with Vinnakota below.
President Jonathan Holloway and Rajiv Vinnakota discuss the impact that civics education can have upon our democracy during the Byrne Seminar "Citizenship, Institutions, and the Public" on Wednesday, September 13, 2023.
A veteran diplomat and respected scholar of international relations, Richard Haass is president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations after having served as CFR’s president for 20 years. A Rhodes Scholar with extensive government experience, he is the author or editor of 16 books, including 14 on American foreign policy. Watch an excerpt from President Holloway's conversation with Haass below.
Among the many discussion topics between Jonathan Holloway and Richard Haass during their Oct. 4, 2023, Byrne Seminar conversation was the significance of norms in sustaining a democratic society.
DeForest B. Soaries, Jr.
A Baptist minister, author, public advocate and financial educator, DeForest B. Soaries, Jr. serves as President and CEO of Corporate Community Connections, Inc. With over 30 years of ministry experience he has a practiced perspective on spiritual growth, educational excellence, economic empowerment, and faith-based community development. Watch an excerpt from President Holloway's conversation with Soaries below.
Among the many discussion topics between Jonathan Holloway and DeForest B. Soaries during their Oct. 2, 2023, Byrne Seminar conversation was the potential impact of opposing viewpoints upon our understanding and personal growth.
The Co-Founder of Medley and a former Executive Vice President at Goldman Sachs, Edith Cooper is one of the nation's leading Black business executives. She serves on several public company boards, including Amazon, PepsiCo, EQT Partners, and nonprofit boards such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and Mount Sinai Hospital. Watch an excerpt from President Holloway's conversation with Cooper below.
Among the many discussion topics between Jonathan Holloway and Edith Cooper during their Oct. 18, 2023, Byrne Seminar conversation was the uncomfortable nature of change and the growth of understanding that comes with that discomfort.
Mike Emanuel JMS'90
A New Jersey native, Rutgers alumnus and veteran reporter, Mike Emanuel is the chief Washington correspondent for FOX News, where he also serves as a co-anchor of FOX News Live. During his more than 25 years with the network, he has provided live coverage of numerous national and international events, as well as breaking election news from Washington, D.C. Watch an excerpt from President Holloway's conversation with Emanuel below.
Among the many discussion topics between Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway and Mike Emanuel, Chief Washington Correspondent for Fox News, during their Oct. 25, 2023, Byrne Seminar conversation was the importance of discourse in the face of disagreement.
About the Byrne Seminar
Byrne Seminars are small, 1-credit course, available exclusively to first-year undergraduate students at Rutgers–New Brunswick. Offered through the Office of Undergraduate Education, these classes are taught by our world-renowned faculty who come from departments and professional schools across the university. Each unique seminar offers students the chance to experience the excitement of original research as faculty members share their curiosity, their intellectual passion, and their new ideas and fields of knowledge.