Sheedy Family Program Launches Gateway Course, "Business in Context: The Big Questions"

Author: Paul Blaschko

A screenshot of the website for the Sheedy Family Program's gateway course, "Business in Context"

The Sheedy Family Program in Economy, Enterprise, and Society has launched "Business in Context: The Big Questions," a gateway course for the program that serves students studying business and the liberal arts. The innovative course lives online and can be accessed at The course website is where students — and the general public — can access course materials and resources, including YouTube videos produced by the Sheedy Family Program's team and an interactive calendar of course readings.

The course was developed by the Sheedy Family Program's director, Dr. Paul Blaschko, and assistant director, Dr. Chris Hedlin. Blaschko is an assistant teaching professor in the College of Arts & Letters' philosophy department, and Hedlin has a Ph.D. in literature from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. As a multi-disciplinary team, their backgrounds are reflected in the course's unique design and the content it covers.

"We wanted to create a class that was experiential and practical, but that also drew deeply on the liberal arts tradition," said Hedlin. "And we're accomplishing this by having students read Shakespeare, watch contemporary films, and engage with classical texts on themes like economy, society, and business."

Blaschko added, "We're thrilled that these materials are now available to our students, the broader Notre Dame community, and the general public. Asking big questions with clear practical implications, and focusing on transformative learning in the classroom is exactly what's so distinctive about a Notre Dame education."

The course will serve students admitted to the Sheedy Family Program, who are required to take it in their first year of participation. It will be taught in both the fall and the spring each year, and will serve as the cornerstone to the program's distinctive curriculum. A trailer for the course can be seen below, and more information about the Sheedy Family Program is available at