As crisis continues, Pitt adapting with more online events

It’s not just classes and meetings that have moved online at Pitt. The University is working to foster community remotely by providing interactive workshops and lectures in several areas.

People with permission to publish in the University Events Calendar are now being encouraged to include links to their virtual events there.

Here’s a look at some events open to the Pitt community:

Virtual Town Hall, 3-4 p.m. April 2: Dean of Students Kenyon Bonner and Vice Provost of Undergraduate Studies Joe McCarthy will be answering questions regarding academics and student life in Pitt's new virtual environment at a Virtual Town Hall.  Submit a question in advance or by using the chat feature during the event. Join via Zoom:

Virtual Provost's Office Hours, 3:30-5 p.m. April 2: Provost Ann Cudd is holding her regular monthly office hours for all faculty, staff and students as a Zoom Meeting. Click on the hyperlink below to join from a computer or smartphone. (Dial-in only options can be found on the University Events Calendar.) Participants will wait in a virtual “waiting room” after joining the meeting, and Provost Cudd will meet with participants in the order they arrive. Depending on the number of attendees, this could be a fairly long wait. Also note that no notice is given before you are connected to Provost Cudd. When it is your turn, she will appear in the Zoom window. Join Zoom Meeting:

CRSP WEBINAR LECTURE: “Confronting Racial Bias in Social Media Data and AI Tools against Gun Violence,” Noon-1:30 p.m. April 9: This lecture by Desmond U. Patton, associate professor, Columbia School of Social Work and Department of Sociology, and associate dean for Curriculum Innovation and Academic Affairs, will be live-streamed. Click here to register.

Live Interview: Socialism for Realists, 2-3:30 p.m. April 9: Forty years ago, Margaret Thatcher declared that “there is no alternative.” State socialism was dying and capitalism, restructured as neoliberalism, was ascendant. The collapse of state socialism in 1991 seemed to hammer the last nail into socialism’s coffin and vindicate Thatcher’s prophecy. Fast forward to today —socialism is back. However, the road to socialism is not easy. Today’s socialists cannot simply be dreamers. They must also be realists. This live interview with Sam Gindin, former research director of the Canadian Auto Workers and now adjunct professor at York University in Toronto, will discuss the need for socialists to establish popular confidence in the feasibility of a socialist society and the pragmatic steps we can take to get there. Sponsored by the Center for Russian, Eastern European and Eurasian Studies. Register here to join the Zoom event.

Live Interview: Everyday Maoism in Revolutionary China, 2-3:30 p.m. April 16: Aminda Smith, associate professor of History at Michigan State University, will explore the profound and personal changes in individual’s consciousness through multiple points of contact between individuals, the state, the Party, and its propaganda apparatuses in China. Communist revolution in the 20th century was reliant on a profound change in individual consciousness. It is not surprising that communist ideology spoke forcefully and often about creating “new people.” Revolutionary China was no different. But how did Chinese communists at various levels, from Mao Zedong to village cadres, understand their work to transform individual consciousness? What did “Maoism” mean in the everyday? Register to join on Zoom here or find dial-in information.


Typesetting with LaTeX, 1-3 p.m. April 3: LaTeX is a popular and powerful markup language for typesetting documents such as academic articles, theses and dissertations, manuals, and resumes. It is useful especially for science and math papers. In this workshop, we'll walk through the basics of formatting and compiling documents, as well as common tools and resources for working in LaTeX. Join through the University Events Calendar.

Share Data with the Pitt Data Catalog, 10:30-11 a.m. April 9: In this coffee break, learn how to advertise your data in the Pitt Data Catalog to help increase the reproducibility of your research, without having to make it completely public. This online workshop is part of the Health Science Library System Coffee Break series. Coffee Breaks are 30-minute classes on a focused topic. Coffee will be provided. Registration is required. Please register here.

Beyond Beginner Workshop: Getting Going with Pandas in Python, 1-4 p.m. April 10: In this workshop, attendees will work at their own pace to learn basic data science tasks in Pandas. Pandas is a fantastic Python package which provides data structures and analysis tools for data science tasks. The workshop will cover the data structures, selection, mapping functions, reductions, statistics, input/output, pivot tables, grouping, and time-series data. Basic knowledge of Python is required. Attendees should be familiar with the syntax, using lists, and basic knowledge of lambdas. Sponsored by the Falk Library of the Health Sciences, online. Registration is required. Register here.