The DCI welcomes Sara Copic as our new Assistant Director! Dr. Copic will be responsible for assisting with the development, implementation, and assessment of the DCI’s programs and operations. Dr. Copic’s experience at both the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Notre Dame prepares her exceedingly well to help lead the DCI’s efforts to create opportunities for productive dialogue and deliberation in diverse classroom settings, outside of the classroom, and in the community.
Dr. Copic received her PhD in philosophy from UNC-Chapel Hill, where she recently served as Visiting Teaching Assistant Professor of Philosophy and taught courses in practical ethics, bioethics, the ethics of peace, war, and defense, language and communication, and more. In her research, Dr. Copic specializes in the philosophy of language. She writes about the relationship our ordinary discourse has to truth and social cooperation, and how these goals determine different types of linguistic meaning. Her teaching and research thus directly relate to some of the themes that the DCI engages with on a regular basis.
Dr. Copic has also worked as Design Project Manager in the Office of Digital Learning at the University of Notre Dame, where she led over 12 different digital education projects to successful completion, including the University’s digital resiliency initiative during the Covid-19 pandemic and projects on tech and innovation ethics, poverty, and interfaith dialogue. Dr. Copic’s experience leading complex education projects will be another asset to the DCI, where she will help design and implement programs in all of its focus areas.
In this work, Dr. Copic will apply lessons she has learned as a scholar-teacher who focuses on utilizing active learning strategies that foster an inclusive classroom environment and bridge achievement gaps between students from different backgrounds. In her teaching, she has also focused on helping students practice reflection and critical thinking not only on their own but also in community with one another.
In addition to her duties as the DCI’s Assistant Director, Sara looks forward to teaching a course at Davidson on the nature and significance of artificial intelligence in the College Writing Program in Spring 2024. Dr. Copic is an affiliate of the AI Project at UNC Chapel Hill and also writes about what lessons we can learn about meanings by studying large language models. AI is a hot topic ripe for deliberation, and Dr. Copic’s course will enable students to grapple with both its challenges and opportunities and connect with any programming the DCI organizes around this important issue.
All to say, we are excited that Dr. Copic has joined the DCI’s leadership team! Watch out for blog posts and emails from Dr. Copic, and say hi to her if you see her on campus or in the community.