The fact that Park Avenue literally runs into Rollins College speaks volumes about the relationship between the two. It's a dialogue that enriches both communities, ultimately blending them into one.
Such cross-pollination of ideas is the objective of Rollins' Winter Park Institute, which hosts guest speakers from myriad fields and backgrounds, free of charge to all attendees.
"We want to engage Rollins and our extended community, to stimulate intellectual conversation," says Gail Sinclair, WPI's executive director.
In the Institute's fifth year, Rollins College welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof to the Alfond Sports Center. Kristof will discuss ways to reverse the depredations of human rights violations against women and girls as explained in his book, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide. Sheryl WuDunn, the book's co-author and Mr. Kristof's wife, will also lecture at Rollins, on Oct. 10.
"Since we are a liberal arts school, we bring in a variety of speakers, but with Mr. Kristof, he was very specifically coordinated with our first-year program," Sinclair says, referring to Rollins' Summer Reading Program. Per the program, all incoming first-year students collectively read a book – Half the Sky, for the class of 2016 – which explores topics of "leadership and citizenship."
Mr. Kristof's engagement at Rollins coincides with a special presentation on the PBS film series Independent Lens. The documentary, airing in two parts Oct. 1 and 2, will draw from nearly 20 years of research and writing compiled to complete Half the Sky. Additional lectures are scheduled throughout the Winter Park community to highlight the film's October premiere.
"Our mission at Rollins is to encourage socially responsible, global citizens," Sinclair says. "And that ties really well with Mr. Kristof's and Ms. WuDunn's book."
7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6
Alfond Sports Center, Rollins College
1000 Holt Ave.