‘The Topic’ event happening today offers community an opportunity to talk about Ohio politics

Miami University Regionals Downtown Hamilton hosts multiple education opportunities

Miami University Regionals Downtown Hamilton will host a number on-going education and enrichment opportunities for members of the community. Some events and programs will be held in person, while others will be offered only in a virtual format.

“What we are trying to do is what we started out to do, almost fifteen years ago, which is to bring the university to the community, and that’s through education, information and entertainment. We think of our community members as unregistered students of the university,” said John Vaughn, coordinator, of Miami University Regionals Downtown Hamilton and Community Outreach.

He said many residents already participate in a lot of different activities, like the sporting events, and speaker programs. Now, even more community members can take advantage of the program offerings with the diverse options, along with the expanded online opportunities that are available.

“Bringing the resources of the university to the community is something that we feel is important,” Vaughn said, “By bringing virtual events to the community and inviting them to participate from home or from our site in downtown is just another way of bringing people in.”

One popular virtual program is the “The Topic,” which will be today at noon. The program titled, “Ohio Politics — Where Are We Headed?” is a virtual-only program that can be viewed from home or from the Miami University Hamilton Downtown Center. “The Topic” is held on the first Friday of every month.

“It started out as a discussion downtown, but what we found is we might have more participation if we made it available from home as well. So, that’s why we advertise the Zoom site. That way, people who don’t wish to be in a group yet, because of masks and things like that don’t have to. They can still participate, and we’ve gotten a pretty good response on that, too,” Vaughn said.

In this month’s community roundtable, participants will discuss the 2022 election in Ohio as well as other recent developments in state politics. The virtual discussion will be moderated by John Forren, executive director, of Miami University’s Menard Family Center for Democracy. To register, go to https://miamioh.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_O6Q8nEd_SluGmofZ0Qnrqg.

The program, “What’s Your Story?” is another community favorite. The program will be held on Tues., Mar. 8 at 7 p.m. with special guest Kathy Klink. Klink is a retired school administrator, city council member, and community volunteer.

“She brings a lot to the community with her volunteerism, her experience as a former school superintendent of the Lakota Local School District, and she has lived in Hamilton virtually all of her life,” Vaughn said, “She has quite a background. That program will be a live program downtown with an audience, and we always get a good audience for those programs. We’ve been doing this program for five or six years,” Vaughn said.

The “What’s Your Story?” program will be recorded by TvHamilton and be made available for later viewing.

Another program, “Meditation and Mindfulness Practice” will be offered every Saturday in March at 2 p.m. With average of five to 15 participants at each session, Mindfulness meditation is a mental training practice that teaches participants how to slow down racing thoughts, let go of negativity, or to calm the mind and body. Techniques can vary, but in general, mindfulness meditation involves deep breathing and awareness of the body and the mind. The group meets in person each Saturday. Miami University Regionals Downtown Hamilton Center is located at 221 High Street in downtown Hamilton.

“We are trying to rebuild our audience for each of these programs, from pre-pandemic times, which is almost two years ago now,” Vaughn said.

A variety of programs will continue to be offered both in-person and virtually. The programs are offered at no cost to participants. For more information, contact John Vaughn, coordinator, Miami University Regionals Downtown Hamilton at (513) 785-1821, or by email at vaughnjh@MiamiOH.edu.

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