Continued Learning @ UE Courses

The University of Evansville is offering the following online courses through our Continued Learning at UE program in Spring 2022. Complete the registration form to secure your spot today.

March 16 – April 13

Reading Hemingway’s In Our Time - $40

9:00 a.m. On campus
Instructor: Dr. Mark Cirino

Through a careful reading of Ernest Hemingway’s short-story masterpiece In Our Time, we will gain an appreciation for and a knowledge of the Hemingway style, literary modernism, the theory of narrative, and the joy of close-reading good literature. No knowledge of Hemingway is expected: even those unfamiliar or even hostile to Hemingway’s style or persona will benefit from exposure to his groundbreaking prose achievements.

Course Materials: Any edition of Hemingway’s In Our Time, although Dr. Cirino will be using the new Norton Critical Edition edited by J. Gerald Kennedy [978-0393543056]. Students can also use The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway [978-0684843322], The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway [978- 0684-80334-8], or the Scribner paperback of In Our Time [978-0-684-82276-1]. Dr. Cirino can also provide online editions that can be read for free. Students may contact Dr. Cirino at with any questions about their edition.

Instructor: Dr. Mark Cirino is Professor of English, Chair of the Department of English and Creative Writing, and the Melvin M. Peterson Endowed Chair in English. He has written or edited ten books, including the forthcoming One True Sentence: Readers & Writers on Hemingway’s Art (Godine, July 2022). He is the co-creator and host of the popular Hemingway Society-sponsored podcast, One True Podcast. He has taught American literature at UE since 2007.

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What the Founding Fathers Fought About - $40

11:00 a.m. On campus
Instructor: Michael Austin, PhD

As the recent Broadway musical Hamilton shows, our Founding Fathers fought a lot. And they fought about many of the things that we fight about. This course will examine the interactions of six early statesmen around four major issues. The statesmen will be George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and Benjamin Franklin. The four areas of controversy will be: 1) Religion in the public sphere; 2) the power of the federal government and the power of the states; 3) taxes; and 4) the powers of the federal judiciary. We will discover that there is no such thing as “the Founding Fathers’ position” on any of these issues because the Founding Fathers disagreed with themselves about every one of them. The course will use Dr. Austin’s 2012 book That’s Not What They Meant as its major text.

Instructor: Michael Austin, PhD. Michael Austin is the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost at the University of Evansville. Before moving to Evansville, he was Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Newman University (Kansas), and before that, Dean of Graduate Studies at Shepherd University (West Virginia) where he taught composition, world literature, and British literature. He is the author of several textbooks and works of literary criticism.

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Bird Lovers’ Class - $40

1:00 p.m. On campus
Instructor: Sharon Sorenson

The Bird Lovers' Class is intended to increase enthusiasm for birds and birding by aiding class members in identifying, locating, attracting, and appreciating birds. The class will help members learn to:

  • identify bird species by focusing not on color but on key unique body parts--head, beak, feet, wings, tail
  • use birding resources, including field guides, both print and apps, to track down identities, determine birds' summer/winter ranges and migratory routes, and learn birds' songs
  • identify habitat attractive to various bird species in order to find exciting birds, recognizing what lives in grasslands, wetlands, woodlands, and edges where habitats merge
  • recognize particulars of bird habitat that provides food, shelter, water, and nest sites and nest materials, and apply those particulars to both locating and attracting birds
  • describe select bird behaviors--what birds do, why and when, including, especially, migrating, breeding, and molting
  • improve yard conditions to make the yard bird friendly, using feeders, year-round water sources, and, especially, native plants
  • explore birding opportunities, including extensions like travel, gardening, and photography

Course Materials: Class members may choose at some point to purchase a field guide either in print or app form, but a guide isn't necessary for class. We will discuss pros and cons of each to aid decision.

Instructor: Sharon Sorenson has been a passionate birder since an early age and has gardened for birds for over 35 years. She's authored 23 books, including Planting Native to Attract Birds to Your Yard and a broader reference Birds in the Yard Month by Month. Her newest book, How Birds Behave, shares a year-long record of what she saw (and photographed) birds doing in the yard with explanations of why they were doing so. Recipient of the prestigious Earl Brooks Award for the Advancement of Conservation of Natural Resources in Indiana, Sorenson has been writing a biweekly "For the Birds" newspaper column since 2002, has conducted nearly 150 birding workshops and lectures, posts timely videos on her Bird Watching YouTube channel, and for 15 years has taught a popular monthly birding class free to the public at Evansville Central Library. Recently, she was a guest on a one-hour PBS special titled "Bird Migration." Her website includes introductory birding information at and she posts almost daily about birds and bird habitat on Facebook at SharonSorensonBirdLady.

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Painting with the Master’s: Botanicals and Abstracts - $40

3:00 p.m. On campus
Instructor: Michelle Peterlin

We will study one artist per week. I will give the artist's biography and describe their painting techniques. Afterward, I will have a hands-on teaching session and have the students create a painting using the artist's technique.

Instructor: Michelle Peterlin. Michelle Vezina Peterlin is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst where she studied under legendary painters John Grillo and Leonard Gongora and received a degree in painting. She was born and raised in Gardner, Massachusetts. Currently, she resides with her husband in Evansville, IN. She has been a professional artist for over 30 years and currently exhibits her work throughout the United States.

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The Irish Famine - $40

3:00 p.m. Online
Instructor: Daniel Gahan

This course will examine the causes, impact, and consequences of the Great Famine in Ireland and will compare that event with famous famines of the twentieth century. The larger objective is to determine why famines happen and to assess the legacy they have.

Course Materials: This course will be based largely on documentary films.

Films on Ireland:

  • The Great Irish Famine (BBC, 1996)
  • The Hunger (RTE, 2020)
  • The Irish in America: Long Journey Home: The Great Hunger. (1995)

Films on other famines:

  • Harvest of Despair: Ukraine, 1933
  • The Bengal Famine, 1943
  • China’s Great Famine

Instructor: Daniel Gahan was born in Birmingham, England and spent most of his childhood and youth in Ireland. He has lived in the United States since 1977 (Chicago, Kansas, Evansville, Evanston). He holds a bachelor’s degree from the National University of Ireland, a master’s from Loyola University Chicago, and a doctorate from the University of Kansas, all in history. He taught at UE from 1986 to 2020 and is now a professor emeritus. He is primarily interested in social history, including the social dimension of modern revolutions. Most of his research work to date focuses on the Irish Rebellion of 1798.

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Office Phone:

Office Email:

Office Location:
Room 311, Graves Hall

Office Hours:
8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CDT