Honors Program helps students explore campus, Terre Haute
Published: Monday, September 12, 2011
Updated: Monday, September 12, 2011 17:09
On Saturday, the ISU Honors Program took their first Saturday Stroll of the year through campus and downtown Terre Haute.
Saturday Strolls has been an annual activity for honors students since the fall semester of 2007. Introduced by Marilyn Bisch, an honors and classical studies professor, the strolls are an attempt to familiarize freshmen with the city of Terre Haute and ISU campus.
Inspired by her own experiences as a Terre Haute native and ISU alumna, Bisch hopes to educate students about the history and culture of Terre Haute beyond the classroom and textbook.
"It not only gives students a better appreciation for Terre Haute, but it promotes exercise through walking," Bisch said.
Bisch started the stroll on the path extending from the fountain. ISU was once filled with streets in the 60s with one main road in the area that students walk through today–the fountain. The path from Fifth and Chestnut streets to Eighth and Chestnut streets was once a busy street filled with traffic.
Throughout the stroll, Bisch made it a point to stop and explain buildings and their origin to the students. She also told stories behind the unique artifacts that have been a mystery to students for years.
The stone artifact that sits just outside the Science Building is the mythical interpretation of Prometheus, who gave fire to mankind. The name Prometheus actually means "forethought" in which modern interpreters have related the meaning to the gift of arts and sciences.
Other stops along the stroll were ISU's Art Gallery featuring a permanent collection of the WPA Art Collection, the Swope Art Museum, the Condit House, the Ohio Building, Fairbanks Hall, Deming Hotel and Tirey Hall, the original Student Union Building.
The original Student Union Building was above and below ground. Students often hear about the underground tunnels on campus, but there are actually buildings underground too, Bisch said.
"There was a part of the Student Union underground that I believe had a Hardees," stated Bisch as she pointed toward the grass top patio in front of Tirey Hall.
The Saturday Stroll concluded at the complementary Annual Altrusa Chili Cook-off that donates all proceeds to community-based education programs and organizations in Terre Haute. The students and staff enjoyed cups of chili and the local festivities as the stroll came to an end.
"I enjoyed myself; I wanted to find a sense of comfort from the town since I'm not from here and I did," said Emily Barrett, a freshman athletic training major.
The next Saturday Strolls are scheduled for Oct. 22 and Nov. 12 at 11 a.m., beginning in front of Einstein Bros. Bagels in the Commons.