BergeMash 2015: Your favorite rappers are teaching courses!

Shopping period is almost over, which means its time for BergeMash! This semester, T-Pain, Fergie, 50 Cent, Beyoncé, Kid Cudi, Sean Kingston, and Ludacris will be trading the limelight for the highlighter and hitting the classroom to spit some knowledge. These musical stars will flash their intellectual bling across nearly every department, so you will surely find a class that fits your academic track.

1. INTL0450—In Da Club: Why Turkey is so eager to join the EU

Professor 50 Cent will guide students on a multidisciplinary inquiry into Turkey’s repeated bids to join the EU. What does Turkey want most from EU membership? Political allies? Increased economic opportunity? A bottle full of “bub”? These and other questions will be addressed through a combination of readings and class discussions.

2. POLS1600—Wild’n Cuz I’m Yung: How Rand Paul threatens the GOP establishment

While Ron Paul is by all accounts old, his son Rand is shaking up the Republican Party. Rand’s libertarian beliefs are forcing many establishment Republicans to shift right or risk being labeled as not conservative enough. At the same time, Rand’s views occasionally align him with liberal policies; on the subject of legalized marijuana, he famously said to Bill O’Reilly, “You can catch me high, it’s all good, no biggie.” This seminar will trace Rand Paul’s rise to prominence and what he means for the future of the GOP.

3. PHYS0911—Fire Burning: The thermodynamics of spontaneously-combusting shorties

Why do certain young females burst into flames when they dance? Are they dancing too fast? Was the room too hot to begin with? At what point are onlookers advised to call 9-1-1? Professor Sean Kingston will challenge students to explore these and other questions in this intermediate-level physics course.

4. ECON2000–Money Maker: Advanced seminar in macroeconomic modeling

Topics will include Bayesian and structural econometrics, Method of Moments (GMM) and Empirical Likelihood (EL), Kernel methods for density and regression estimation, optimal instruments and local EL,  applications to non-linear time series models, and Euler equations and asset pricing. Professor Ludacris will offer a variety of swimming lessons after class.

5. INTL0360—Glamorous: Rising middle classes, China and India

Professor F to the E-R, G to I to E of the economics department will explore how burgeoning middle classes in China and India are changing global trends of consumerism. Special attention will be paid to how the increased purchasing power of developing countries contributes to changing perceptions of what qualifies as “all the finer thi-i-ings.”


Critical Review: Professor Fergie is “obviously very knowledgeable” and “great at making difficult subjects accessible.” However, some students felt she “went a little overboard” with the Socratic method during discussion section.

6. COLT0600—Naughty Girl: Joan of Arc in history and literature

This class will examine portrayals of Joan of Arc in historical and literary texts. Students will be asked to critically examine why and how the popular image of Joan of Arc has changed over the years in relation to various literary, philosophical, and political movements. (Enrollment limited to 20 single ladies.)


Critical Review: Students consistently praised Professor Beyoncé for her engaging lectures and accessibility outside of class. But she is a demanding teacher: Respondents described her grading as “fierce.”

7. SOC1000—Buy You a Drank: Social and scientific perspectives on alcohol

Humans have consumed alcoholic beverages for thousands of years. Methods and forms of alcohol consumption vary across countries and cultures. This course will examine where, when, and why alcohol is consumed. Students will also study the psychological effects of alcohol consumption and ask questions such as: How does the consumption of alcoholic beverages influence your decision to roll with me back to the crib so I can show you how I live?

Images via Jokichi Matsubara ’18

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