“After Dinner Scholar” Podcast Reaches Major Milestone

When Wyoming Catholic College first launched its “After Dinner Scholar” podcast in February, 2017, the intention was to “feature conversations with the College’s professors, board members, advisors, and guests about the books and ideas that they love and that make up our integrated curriculum.” Designed to give its listeners “an opportunity to explore those ideas, as well as highlighting practical ways to engage the Liberal Arts and enter into the great conversation that is Western Civilization,” the podcast’s chief goal was to share the substantial wealth of its academic programs with those unable to be present in Lander or at Wyoming Catholic. Achieving that goal would not require dramatic quantitative success, we told ourselves; even a small handful of friends and supporters listening (and subscribing!) to these conversations would make the attempt worthwhile.

This week’s episode, however, “Pursuing Poetic Knowledge with Dr. Jim Tonkowich”, did achieve a dramatic measure of quantitative success, marking the 100,000th After Dinner Scholar download in the podcast’s history. “Back in 2017, our faculty were drawn by this opportunity to share the ideas and books they love with a broader audience,” said Wyoming Catholic College president Dr. Glenn Arbery. “I’m not surprised that so many others have been drawn to it.”

For Dr. Jim Tonkowich, who produces and hosts the show, it’s been a wonderful opportunity to expand upon one of the College’s greatest features: its community. “Freshmen and their parents often recognize me by voice,” he said. “They’ve been listening and getting acquainted with Wyoming Catholic College and our faculty, in some cases, for years. Alumni tell me that the podcast keeps them connected to the College and participating in the great conversation they began during their time here. A priest friend has a weekly dinner date with The After Dinner Scholar. As we add additional outlets–we’re now at Audible in addition to Podbean and iTunes–and word spreads, we trust that our podcast (and thus, the influence of Wyoming Catholic College) will touch even more people in the future.”

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