Office of Engagement to host first faculty lecture in game-day series

Politics Prof. Larry Sabato will speak at Alumni Hall Saturday

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The Alumni Association partners with Lifetime Learning to host More Than the Score and the lectures take place in Alumni Hall.

Andrew Walsh | Cavalier Daily

The University Office of Engagement’s Lifetime Learning program will host the first lecture in its game-day series ‘More Than the Score’ Saturday morning at Alumni Hall with an event featuring the Director and Founder of the Center for Politics, Politics Prof. Larry Sabato before Virginia’s season-opening football game against Richmond. Drawing attendees from the game-going crowd and beyond, the first lecture of the 2018 football season is entitled “Sabato’s Crystal Ball” where Sabato will discuss the current political climate of the country. 

The Lifetime Learning program, established in 2005, organizes faculty-led lectures — such as Reunion Seminars during class reunion weekends — and extended learning opportunities for the University community through online resources. The More than the Score series has been occurring for over a decade in partnership with the Alumni Association.

“More Than the Score is a lecture for alumni parents, friends — students are welcome to attend,” said Althea Brooks, senior director at Lifetime Learning. “It’s been going on for well over 12 years now, and the lectures are U.Va. faculty talking on topics they’re teaching in the classroom, research being conducted at U.Va, books that our faculty are writing, anything that’s relevant and worthy of sharing with our alumni community.” 

The lectures, open to the public, take place from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. the day of, and are free with registration. However, Sabato’s lecture — which will deal with President Donald Trump and his administration, midterm elections and the struggle for power in Congress — has already filled capacity. The maximum capacity for each lecture is 450 attendees, and waitlists are available for lectures that have filled capacity. 

Audience members typically include alumni, parents and friends of the Charlottesville and University community,  Brooks said. Brooks also said the lectures are an opportunity for alumni to learn about various topics before attending home football games. 

“We have a number of attendees traveling from as far as Richmond and sometimes Tidewater — they often [come] just to hear the talk,” Brooks said. “So we originally thought this was great for those attending the game, but it’s much bigger than that.” 

In an email to The Cavalier Daily, Sabato said he predicts the audience will be very engaged in the lecture, especially considering the intensity of the current political climate.

“This is one of those times when people are mesmerized — or terrified — by the politics of the day,” Sabato said. “The stakes are high. So people pay attention, and of course they have their own strongly held views.”

Sabato has been lecturing on politics at More Than the Score since its conception and said sports and academics can thrive together. 

“It’s been very well received,” Brooks said. “We tend to have between say 200 to 500 in attendance every Saturday morning that there’s a home football game, and the lecture series only takes place if there’s a home football game on Saturday morning.” 

As the season progresses, More Than the Score will feature other faculty speakers, such as Media Studies Prof. Siva Vaidhyanathan, Athletic Director Carla Williams and Jim Tucker, a professor of psychiatry and neurobehavioral sciences at the School of Medicine. 

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