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Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program

The Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program (VSP) of the Central Oregon Community College Foundation brings renowned scholars, lecturers and experts to our region to provide broad-based programming on a diverse range of subjects. VSP's mission is to provide educational and relevant programming to COCC, its students and the community.

The program was established in 1985 by the late Robert W. Chandler, Sr. to honor his wife Nancy.

For more information about the program or its upcoming events, please contact Charlotte Gilbride, the Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program Coordinator at or 541-383-7257.

If you would like to receive email notification of upcoming events, subscribe here.

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Vaccines: History, Science & Ethics 

Jacob M. Appel - MD JD MPH, Director of Ethics Education in Psychiatry, Icahn School of Medicine & Emergency Room Psychiatrist,  Mount Sinai Health SystemJacob Appel

Wednesday, October 28, 6 p.m.

VIRTUAL EVENT -- FREE and OPEN to the public.


Since the development of smallpox vaccines in the 18th century, vaccination against illness has been the subject of both scientific pursuit and ethical debate. Many of these questions--relating to efficacy, risk and equitable access--have returned to the public eye in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Should volunteers be intentionally exposed to a disease in order to speed vaccinate generation? Who should get priority to vaccine access if doses are limited? To what degree should people be able to opt out of vaccines and should they face any penalties for doing so?  Never in recent memory has the subject of vaccination been more relevant or more important. This talk is intended to be educational, accessible and fun. 

About Jacob M. Appel
Jacob M. Appel MD JD MPH is Director of Ethics Education in Psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine and an emergency room psychiatrist in the Mount Sinai Health System. Appel is the author of eighteen books of fiction, nonfiction and poetry, including a compendium of ethical conundrums drawn from medicine and healthcare (Who Says You're Dead?: Medical & Ethical Dilemmas for the Curious & Concerned).  His commentary on bioethics appears frequently in newspapers including the New York Times, Chicago Tribune and San Francisco Chronicle. More at:    

This program is sponsored by Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund and the Associated Students of COCC.

The Fate of Food: 

What We'll Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter WorldLIttle headshot

Amanda Little - Author, Journalist & Professor

Monday, November 9, 6:30 p.m. 

VIRTUAL EVENT - Tickets $5 (students are free - email for code)


The single biggest threat of climate change is the collapse of food systems. Climate models show that crop production will decline sharply due to drought, heat, and flooding. Water supplies are in jeopardy. Meanwhile, the world’s population is expected to grow 30 percent by midcentury. How will we feed 9 billion people sustainably on a hotter, more populous planet?

Amanda Little will share stories and insights from her travels through a dozen countries in search of answers to this question. This was a deep, transformative education, by turns shocking, funny, and powerfully hopeful. She explored old and radically new approaches to food production while charting the growth of a movement that could redefine sustainability on a grand scale.

About Amanda Little 
Amanda Little is the author of The Fate of Food: What We’ll Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter World, an adventure into the lands, minds and machines shaping the future of sustainable food. Little's first book was Power Trip: The Story of America's Love Affair with Energy. She has a particular fondness for far-flung and hard-to-stomach reporting that takes her to ultradeep oil rigs, into sewage plants, and inside monsoon clouds. Little has written about energy, technology, and the environment for The New Yorker, The New York Times, Rolling Stone, among others.  She has interviewed figures ranging from Barack Obama to Lindsey Graham and has been interviewed by journalists including Terri Gross and Fareed Zakaria. She is a Professor of Journalism and Science Writing at Vanderbilt University.

This program is sponsored by The Bulletin, The Environmental Center, Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund and the Associated Students of COCC.

Virtual Book Club on The Fate of Food fate of food

We hope you will join us for our virtual book conversations around Amanda Little's book, The Fate of Food: What We'll Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter World. The book conversations will meet prior to Little's virtual presentation on November 9 and will be facilitated by COCC Health and Human Performance Associate Professor, Owen Murphy. 

Monday, October 26, 6-7:30 p.m. 

Monday, November 2, 6-7:30 p.m.

The first 20 people to register will be given a free copy of The Fate of Food. And even more exciting, Little plans to join in on the conversation on November 2. Sign up today! 

Register for book conversation here 


Ericka Huggins - Spiritual Activism & Social Justice Ericka Huggins

We would like to share a video recording of this year's Season of Nonviolence keynote speaker, Ericka Huggins. Ericka spoke to a sold out audience in February. She shared her insight, her story, her life's work, her wisdom and her love. For those of you who were able to attend, we think you will enjoy hearing her again. For those of you who couldn't attend, you are in for a treat!

Click here to watch Ericka's Spiritual Activism & Social Justice presentation at COCC

For more information on Ericka, visit her web site here.  

Results of Our May 2020 Survey

The Visiting Scholar Program sent out an on-line survey in May to gather opinions on the program and to help us as we plan for future programming.

See Summary of Results Here

SPOTLIGHT on VSP Alumni -- What are our past speakers doing now?

During this time of virtual and distance learning, we thought it would be fun to feature some of our past VSP speakers and let you know what they are doing now. Hope you enjoy!

Dr. Robin DiAngelo Robin DiAngelo

In January 2019, The Visiting Scholar Program hosted Author and Critical Racial & Social Justice Educator, Robin DiAngelo for "Seeing the Racial Water" to a sold out audience at Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Bend.

DiAngelo's New York Times best-selling book, "White Fragility," is a historical and cultural analyses on what causes defensive moves by white people and how this inhibits cross-racial dialogue. "White Fragility" was published in 2018 and has been on the New York Times best-seller list for over 92 weeks.

Robin DiAngelo has recently added a reading guide for the book on her web site. Download the free reading guide to White Fragility here.

David JollyDavid Jolly

In May 2018, we hosted former Congressman David Jolly (R-FL) for "Healing the Partisan Divide." The same year, he left the Republican Party to become an independent. He works as a political contributor for NBC News and MSNBC and refers to himself as a Bull Mooser. (This is in reference to a 3rd political party, The Progressive Party, formed by former President Theodore Roosevelt after he lost the Republican nomination in 1912). Jolly is currently authoring his first book.

This month, Jolly was named executive chairman of the Serve America Movement (SAM). SAM is a new national political party committed to transparency, accountability, fundamental electoral process reform and problem solving with the stated goals of advancing greater competition and accountability in state and national politics, and to build cross-partisan consensus around issues. SAM members share a set of universal principles and one ultimate goal: to fix a system that they believe has been corrupted by the mainstream parties and the people who prop them up.

Watch David Jolly in this video introducing SAM

Dr. Shakti Butler Dr. Shakti Butler

In January 2017, we hosted President and Founder of World Trust, filmmaker, and transformative learning educator, Dr. Shakti Butler for "Irresistible Justice: Cultivating Joy as a Pathway to Equity."

Rooted in love and justice, World Trust produces films, curricula, workshops and programs that are catalysts for institutional, structural and cultural change. World Trust produces educational films and individuals are able to rent the films on-line. See the available films here.

Watch Dr. Shakti Butler's January 27, 2017 talk at COCC.

Beth MacyBeth Macy

In October 2017, we hosted Author & Journalist Beth Macy for "Reporting from the Margins" at the Tower Theatre. During her presentation that evening, she mentioned that her next book was going to take a deep look at the national opioid crisis.

The book, "Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Companies that Addicted America"  was published in 2018 and the paperback version was released in 2019. It was an instant bestseller, garnering positive reviews, lots of radio and TV coverage — including an interview on Fresh Air  — and a television series option with Fox 21 Studios and Warren Littlefield. It also won the L.A. Times Book Prize award for science and technology, and was short-listed for The Kirkus Prize and the Andrew Carnegie Medal. 

Tom Hanks called the book "another deep -- and deeply needed -- look into the troubled soul of America."  

Beth is still writing about this issue -- she recently released an audio documentary for Audible Original called "Finding Tess: A Mother's Search for Answers in a Dopesick America" about how systems abandon those with substance use disorder.

john a. powelljohn powell

In January 2016, we hosted Director of the Othering and Belonging Institute (formerly Hass Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society) at UC Berkeley john a. powell for "Opening the Question of Race to the Question of Belonging."

In Fall 2018, the Othering & Belonging Institute launched the Who Belongs? podcast demonstrating their commitment to public dialogue.

Since his presentation at COCC, Professor powell has been developing the concept of "targeted universalism."  In May 2019, the Institute released its first primer on its framework. Targeted universalism is an approach that supports the needs of the particular while reminding us that we are all part of the same social fabric. It provides a roadmap to design policy that can serve groups otherwise excluded, while also promising to improve outcomes for people situated in relatively privileged positions. Read more here.

Watch Professor powell's talk at COCC from January 27, 2016.

Dr. Anton Treuer Dr. Anton Treuer

In November 2016, Professor and Author Dr. Anton Treuer presented "Everything You Wanted to Know about Indians but Were Afraid to Ask" on the Bend Campus. The next day he did a faculty training at the Redmond campus and a language workshop at the Madras Campus.

His equity, education, and cultural work continues to put him on a path of service around the nation and the world. Dr. Treuer released a new book this year, "The Language Warrior's Manifesto: How to Keep Our Languages Alive No Matter the Odds."  Anton Treuer has been at the forefront of the battle to revitalize the Ojibwe language for many years. In his new book, he discusses the interrelationship between language and culture, the problems of language loss, strategies and tactics for resisting, and the inspiring stories of successful language warriors.

Watch Anton Treuer's Tedx Talk: Thriving in Indian Country: What’s In the Way and How Do We Overcome.

Alison Wright

 In October 2015, we hosted photojournalist and National Geographic Traveler of the Year, Alison Wright, for "Women Swimming Upstream: The Global Power of Women at Work in the Developing World" to a sold out audience at the Tower Theatre.Alison Wright book cover

Wright has continued to globally document endangered cultures and issues concerning the human condition and published a new book, "The Human Tribe," in 2017.

Lately, we have enjoyed following her on Instagram where she has been beautifully documenting life in New York City during the pandemic. See Wright's latest photos and follow Alison Wright Photo on Instagram here.


 Sponsors of The Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program:

Central Oregon Community College

EC logo

St. Charles Health System 

The Source Weekly

 Mid Oregon Credit Union

 TracesCO logo

MCM Fund

Deschutes Public Library

Deschutes Cultural Coalition

mt bachelor rotary

united way deschutes logo


CACO logo  

ascocc logo

ocf logo

U of O School of Journalism

fairfield new logo

Bend Bulletin


Vic Russell logo

Accessibility IconIn advance of College events, persons needing accommodation or transportation because of a physical or mobility disability, contact Joe Viola: 541-383-7775. For accommodation because of other disability such as hearing impairment, contact the office of Disability Services at 541-383-7583.

The Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program

This program brings renowned scholars to the Central Oregon region to present a balanced and broad-based scope of programming in the form of lectures, forums and interactive workshops.

Donate to the COCC Foundation *Donate Now to the Visiting Scholar Program

The COCC Foundation is a 501(c)(3) and our tax ID is 93-6041247. Donors may deduct contributions to our organization as provided in section 170 of the IRS code to the extent allowed by law.