Patrick Standen Instructor of Philosophy


B.A. University of Vermont
M.A. Boston College

Areas of Expertise

Philosophy of Disability, 19th century Aesthetic Theory, Existentialism, Medical ethics.

Courses I Teach:

  • Pursuing Wisdom
  • Logic
  • Healthcare ethics
  • First Year Seminar.

My interests in philosophy stem from a brilliant high school philosophy course I chanced to take. I subsequently pursued an undergraduate degree in analytical philosophy and a graduate degree in continental thought. I have also completed graduate studies in psychoanalysis and philosophy at Harvard University, the philosophy of education at the University of Vermont, comparative law at Harvard Law School and literature and politics at Boston University. I served as an editorial assistant on the scholarly journal Philosophy and Social Criticism. My research interests include examining the philosophical and historic dimensions of disability, as well as studying the history of ideas and aesthetics.

Recent News

Patrick Standen of the philosophy faculty spoke to faculty and staff in late October on the topic of teaching students with disabilities. As president of the Northeast Disabled Athletic Association and an instructor of medical ethics at the University of Vermont, Patrick brought years of experience and a philosophical lens to the conversation. Attendees were asked to engage in questions of history, language, and perception, rethinking the concept of disability and how culture come to define what it means to be ‘able.’ He also instructed his audience on the practical application of those ideas, namely tips on etiquette and guidelines on how to equally serve every student’s comfort and success in an educational setting. Professors from a wide spectrum of departments were present, as well as staff from student-centered offices on campus such as Student Life and the Career Education and Alumni Engagement Center.
(posted February 2020)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, again in late May again completed the Vermont City Marathon, his “23rd or 24th” by his count, and is teaching two summer classes at Saint Michael’s. Pat also in recent months: delivered a talk at the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum in Stowe titled “The History of Adaptive Skiing; was an invited essayist and panelist at the Saint Michael’s MLK celebration looking at Collective Liberation (Essay titled “Normalizing a Discourse of Disobedience and Collective Liberation”);  hosted an adaptive Yoga Clinic at RehabGym Colchester in conjunction with the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation; delivered a lecture on the Ethics of Research in an Analytical Chemistry Course at Saint Michael’s; was keynote speaker at the Vermont Statehouse for the Annual Disability Awareness Day sponsored by the Vermont Coalition for Disability Rights; delivered a talk on the spinal cord injury and the neurological system for the Lake Champlain Waldorf School. Shelburne, VT; delivered a talk for the Burlington Irish Heritage Festival titled “The Life of the Mind in Ireland: How a Small Island Made a Big Splash”; delivered a lecture as part of the Burlington Public Philosophy Week titled, “Difference: Philosophy and Disability”; prepared a Fact sheet on SCI for the Learning Health System for Spinal Cord Injury (LHS-SCI) initiative of the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) Global Disability Plan as part of the UVM-based research team with Dr. Rueben Escorpizo. Patrick also participated in a conference and hosting a break-out session based on the INSCI/WHO study at UVM on June 6 and plans to do the Colchester Causeway 15K and Colchester triathlon later this summer.
(posted June 2019)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, delivered a TEDx talk on campus in November, speaking on “enabling discourse.” He focused on disability and discrimination and how we can overcome it, basing his thoughts on the 350-page book that he just completed and sent to Rutgers University Press on November 1.
(posted January 2019)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, delivered a talk on disability and sport at South Burlington High School’s inaugural “Speak Week” on April 19; Pat was invited to speak on Transhumanism at Champlain College, April 13; he delivered a talk for the Saint Michael’s Chemistry Department on CRISPR Technology and the 200th Anniversary of Shelley’s, “Frankenstein” on February 23; and, he was featured with the Burlington Parks and Recreation Department’ Bikepath Accessibility Program. On top of all that, this recent Memorial Day weekend, Pat competed again as a 16-year veteran hand-cycle entrant in the Vermont City Marathon, and was featured on a report by NECN reporter Jack Thurston, as well as being featured in a photo in a Burlington Free Press report from just before the start of the race.
(posted June 2018)

Crystal L’Hote, associate professor of philosophy, along with faculty colleagues Patrick Standen (also philosophy) and Trevian Stanger (environmental studies faculty), contributed to a robust Saint Michael’s presence during Public Philosophy Week (April 30-May 5), an informally organized week of events by area philosophy scholars and enthusiasts billed as “A wonderful week of stimulating discussions and spirited debate.” The Saint Michael’s professors helped lead discussions at different Burlington venues during the week.
(posted June 2018)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, was a reviewer for Routledge Publishing on selected medical ethics titles.  He also delivered a presentation on Transhumanism at Champlain College in October and a talk at the University of Vermont’s Department on Exercise and Movement Science on the philosophy of adaptive sports. Finally, in September he delivered a lecture to Doctoral candidates at the UVM Medical College on the history of the concept of disability.
(posted December 2017)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, participted in “Burlington Public Philosophy Week” early in April. Professors from the University of Vermont and Middlebury and Patrick’s colleague Crystal L’Hote of the Saint Michael’s philosophy faculty also gave talks at various public venues in Burlington and in Winooski.
(posted June 2017)

Patrick Standen,(posted June 2017) instructor of philosophy, on Jan. 24, 2016 will be delivering a talk on Ethan Allen and his contributions to American Philosophy at the Ethan Allen Homestead. It is part of their winter lecture series. On January 7, Patrick raced to a 10th place finish at the 2015 NORCAM Continental Cup and U.S. Nationals Adaptive Nordic Championships in Craftsbury, VT.
(posted January 2016)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, has been asked to be a speaker at the University of Vermont’s Disability Awareness Month Celebration, where he will be delivering the talk titled: “Between Two Jakes: Images of Masculinity and Disability in Modernity” at the Davis Student Center on October 16 at 6:30 p.m. Over the summer as part of the Vermont Humanities Council’s innovative “Ideas on Tap” series, Patrick delivered a lecture at Arts Riot called “Epidemics and Ethics” on April 28; and, on May 12 he gave a presentation and talk about philosophy and Zombies along with Steve Wehmeyer of Champlain College, titled: “What’s with our Zombie Obsession?”
(posted September 2015)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, is invited panelist for a roundtable discussion, “The Legacy of World War I: 100 Years After,” moderated by George Dameron, history professor and director of the Humanities Center, with colleagues from other disciplines, on Dec 2 on campus. Patrick also has been asked to become a partner in Fletcher Free Library’s grant proposal to bring a Smithsonian Museum of Natural History exhibition entitled “Exploring Human Origins” to Fletcher. On October 15, he was the chair of a panel featuring visiting scholars and disability rights activists from Tajikistan for the Vermont Council on World Affairs held in the Pomerleau Alumni Building. On October 9, he was an invited speaker in the 2014 Hegenrother Foundation’s Ignite Burlington Speaker Series. On October 7, Patrick was the guest lecturer in a UVM course on Adapting Physical Education and spoke on the philosophy of adaptive education. He also was a guest on VPR’s Vermont Edition in September) talking about recent developments and opportunities in adaptive sports, and has submitted a poetry manuscript for publication.
(posted December 2014)

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, on March 27 delivered a presentation at the Vermont Governor’s Council on Sport and Physical Fitness’s Worksite Wellness Conference called “Moving What Muscles You Can: The Philosophy of Adapting Exercise Programs for Persons with Physical Disabilities.” Patrick also just has been asked to author a monthly column for a national magazine called The Disabled Sportsman.

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, recently was appointed by Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger to his Advisory Council on Accessibility and was elected co-chair of that council at its first meeting. Patrick also published a short piece on adaptive Nordic skiing for the Vermont Recreation and Parks Association newsletter and gave a presentation and clinic on Nordic sit-skiing at Middlebury’s Rikert Nordic Center as part of the National Wintertrail’s Day Celebration.

Patrick Standen, instructor of philosophy, on October 20 delivered a presentation, “MS and Adaptive Sports,” at the Greater New England Regional MS Conference in Essex, VT.  On November 14 he will be part of a panel representing medical ethics examining quality in healthcare as part of a University of Vermont Department of Internal Medicine program.