Fraternity and Sorority Life continue Last Lecture series

Jack Tierney, Campus Connnections Editor

UW Oshkosh Fraternity and Sorority Life hosted their second biannual Last Lecture event in Reeve Union Ballroom with keynote speakers Art Munin and Autumn Dunsmore on Tuesday.

A silent auction for Make-A-Wish Wisconsin was held in addition to the lecture.

Event coordinator Sierra Skindzelewski said speakers of the Last Lecture series were asked to share their most important message in a hypothetical last lecture.

Munin stressed four topics to the audience: domestic and international adoption, the Family and Medical Leave Act, transgender rights and music.

He said if you can find a life that balances what you do with what you love, you can find happiness.

He said his family means everything to him and that having twins was just another suitable curve ball in life.

Dunsmore mentioned how far she has come in life and the joy that gives her. She said her family, her husband, her dog and the new house she bought last summer are some of the things she is most proud of.

Dunsmore said her lecture was inspired by Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote to always do what you are afraid of doing.

“Once I began doing things I always thought were for other people, since I was too afraid, things began to fall into place and opportunities began to present themselves,” Dunsmore said.

She said sharing a stage with Munin was an honorable opportunity and something she gladly accepted.

Dunsmore said a last lecture event allows her and people in attendance to not only hear other people’s stories but to learn from them.

“Last lecture events are well worth the time, as I have found that most of my education and growth has come from learning from others’ experiences,” Dunsmore said. “While the classroom setting is important, I feel it is more valuable to learn from fellow classmates, professors, faculty, etc.”

UWO student and Beta Theta Pi fraternity member AJ Zemke said the event offered a unique way of looking at life as a whole.

“People don’t always get the chance to step back and look at the bigger picture, and this kind of forces you to,” Zemke said. “It gives you a new perspective on what you prioritize.”

Zemke said he liked how Munin said to love something that loves you back.

“A lot of times, people get lost in things like work and hobbies, things that don’t give anything in return,” Zemke said.

UWO sophomore Cole Walters said he liked Munin’s presentation and the way he connected to it.
“I liked how he talked about his family,” Walters said. “I can connect that to my own family, and I saw how I could connect that further to a future family.”

Skindzelewski said she was encouraged to pursue another lecture event because of the turnout it drew last semester. She said this semester’s turnout was larger than last.

“We’ve created the Last Lecture to build relationships between staff and students,” Skindzelewski said. “It’s unique because they share a message that wouldn’t typically be heard in class or on campus.”

Skindzelewski said the theme of a last lecture event is based on two concepts: what wisdom would we impart to the world if we knew it was our last chance and what would we want as our legacy?

Professor Randy Pausch’s last lecture given to Carnegie Mellon University after being terminally diagnosed with pancreatic cancer is the inspiration to all Last Lecture events. Skindzelewski said Pausch’s message was about achieving childhood dreams.