Bulldogs of Butler: Love major Justin Wolverton

Photo courtesy of Justin Wolverton’s website, thelovingyear.com.

JENNA VORIS | PHOTO EDITOR | jmvoris1@butler.edu

Justin Wolverton discusses his motivation behind pursuing a second degree in love through Butler’s individualized major program, as well as his goals for the future.

This is the latest installment of our Bulldog of Butler series, which is a short interview with someone to get to know more about them. We hope to highlight more and more people on this campus. Go to our website to read more stories about your fellow Dawgs.

The Butler Collegian:  Why do you want to pursue a degree in love?

Justin Wolverton:  I think it’s one of the very few universal concepts that everyone interacts with.  I just see this gap where we have very little training in love.  We’re kind of left to our own devices.  I think our society is skewed toward the idea of romantic love but I think this idea of brotherly love or love for everyone is kind of this untouched subject and there’s so much power there because it doesn’t require any sort of material resource and it’s universal and open to everyone.  Through schooling or any other societal or systemic structure, there’s no real way that guides people towards that.

TBC:  What classes do you take for an individualized major like this one?

JW:  I’m taking a mix of social science. So, a lot of psychology, anthropology, philosophy and sociology to kind of get a scientific foundation for the future practice that I want to do.  There’s also some communication, business, organizational, entrepreneurship and innovation to develop the social platform from which I want to implement policies that are informed by those social sciences.  There’s also more cultural courses so I get some historical and religious context from which people interact with these kind of ideas.  It’s an informed and educated foundation to create policy and programs that get people to be more loving and participate in loving behavior.

TBC:  What’s been your favorite part about being at Butler?

JW:  I think just being surrounded by supportive, enthusiastic, critical minds that have pushed the envelope of what I’ve been doing.  I have this general idea of what I want to do but it’s nice to have people who are supportive and encouraging which is new to me because I normally do a lot of this stuff on my own.  Now, I feel like I have such a nice support system.

TBC:  What do you hope to do with this major in the future?

JW:  The main thing is to try to establish some sort of agency, either governmental or in the private sector, that’s devoted to the practice, accumulation and education of love and loving behavior.  For now, I kind of see that as a public servant position.  I would work with communities or cities or municipalities to essentially educate people on how to develop the capacity to practice altruistic love as well as facilitate existing participation, whether that’s budgeting, funding or just working with organizations that are already working to promote social value.