Loyola University Maryland


The Good Life Course Pairing

Understanding Literature: Secrets and Lies (EN101)

The characters we’ll meet this semester keep secrets and tell lies that range from the mundane to the monstrous. Some lie to survive, some to fit in, and some to stand out. Some pay a price, but others never do. Whether they’re hiding a rotting corpse in an upstairs room, deceiving themselves, or merely telling someone what they want to hear, their secrets and lies illuminate shifting ideas about truth, justice, and survival in society. In addition to exploring literature, we’ll discuss topics like social media, fake news, and ideologies of race, gender, and sexuality. Finally, we’ll consider literature itself as a form of lying that leads us to an important question: how can keeping secrets and telling lies help us live The Good Life?

Faculty Biography

Sondra Guttman has taught in the Loyola English Department since 2008. Her special interests include American literature of the 1930s and African American Modernism. She has a Ph.D. in English from Rutgers University, and B.A. from The Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars Program.

The Good Life in American Society: Conversations, Classics, and Perspectives (SC103D)

Throughout this course we will learn what it means to think sociologically. From the viewpoint of this rich discipline, everyday life and thought always exists within a social context. Indeed, social and cultural commerce along with individual and group identity, are inescapably the products of forces that limit or promote access to the wider environment of opportunity. This is to say that systems existing outside of the self are continually shaping patterns of experience that frame the lives and trajectories of all people. In examining the concept of ‘the good life’, we will focus upon promoting a greater level of awareness regarding the variegated topography indicative of American society. Importantly, the manner by which we will embark upon the journey toward understanding others is to first better understand ourselves. This course should appeal to students who are deeply interested in learning about the world around them.  

Faculty Biography

Jason Singh teaches a wide variety of courses in the sociology department. He holds an MPhil in Economic Sociology from the University of Oxford, and a PhD in the Sociology and Anthropology of Religion from the University of Durham. He and his wife Amanda immensely enjoy the outdoors; hiking, biking, running, and climbing are among their favorite endeavors. Eager to welcome his new Messina cohort to Loyola, Jason looks forward to outdoor excursions focusing on both the beautiful state parks of the area along with exploring the rich history and cultural diversity of Baltimore. 


Mentor Biographies

Meghan Potash has been working at Loyola since graduating in 2010 as a Marketing major.  She continued her degree at Loyola and received her M.B.A. in 2014 and is now the Operations Budget Manager for Facilities and Campus Services.  During her time at Loyola, Meghan was a member of the Women’s Crew Team, studied abroad in Thailand, and was a work study student in the Office of Student Life who initially hired her as a full time employee after graduation in 2010.  She loves that she has the opportunity to continue to come to Loyola’s beautiful campus every day in her career and work with such amazing people and students.  She also enjoys playing indoor and beach volleyball, staying active, spending time with her friends and family, and traveling as much as possible.


A group of students posing for a photo, with the harbor and Baltimore skyline in the background
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