Loyola University Maryland

Messina

Stories We Tell Course Pairing

Data’s Untold Stories: An Introduction to Computer Science through Programming (CS 151)

What stories are data itching to tell us? How do we discover those stories and share them with the world? Students in this course will learn how to solve interesting and relevant data science problems using the Python programming language. By the end of the course students will have analyzed problems such as determining how religious views have changed over time, where natural disasters hit and their impact, or how to find the fastest path to viewing all Baltimore monuments. Students will also gain insights into major areas of computer science, including software engineering, computer hardware, artificial intelligence, and ethical and societal issues in computing. No prior computer science knowledge is expected. Satisfies one math/science core requirement.

Faculty Biography

Megan Olsen is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2011, and has since been teaching at Loyola. Prof. Olsen is passionate about using computer science to study the world around us, and teaching first year students how to use computer science to solve interesting problems. Her research interests are interdisciplinary and include studying problems such as cancer cell growth and the spread of gossip. She looks forward to continuing to advise first year students and help them adjust to college life in her third year teaching in Messina.

Introduction to Theology: Faith, Formation, and Function: exploring the manual and liberal arts (TH201)

This seminar will explore the relationship between education in the liberal and the manual arts, with specific attention to how both require virtue in order to acquire skill and know-how. Readings will include selections from the Old and New Testaments, early and medieval authors, and a recent work by Matthew Crawford called Shop Class as Soulcraft. This class offers students the opportunity to reflect the purpose of a college education, the  process of discerning a vocation, and how college participates in the formation and flourishing of people.

Faculty Biography

Daniel McClain is an affiliate professor of Theology and the Director of Program Operations for the Master of Theological Studies. He is also a musician, a bike and motorcycle tinkerer, and an urban chicken ‘farmer.’

Mentor Biography

Ben Cowman holds a B.A. in Political Science & International Studies and M.S. in Educational Administration from McDaniel College in Westminster, MD. Ben is originally from Maryland, and his interests outside of work include cooking, traveling and politics. In August 2016, Ben began at Loyola as an Assistant Director of Student Engagement focused on leadership education and development programs. Prior to Loyola, Ben worked at Christopher Newport University coordinating program and training efforts focused on student diversity and inclusion. He also has prior experience in residence life, student conduct and student activities. He is a doctoral student through Indiana Tech’s Ph.D. program in Global Leadership and his research interests include the identity development of student leaders, leader-follower role switching behaviors, and experiential learning from co-curricular programs and student organizations.

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