We’re proud to keep boasting that we sent a contingent of three current English majors to the annual Sigma Tau Delta English honors convention. Sophomore Peter Shaver offers a quick write-up of his experience representing the department and university in Minneapolis.
In March of this year, I attended the Sigma Tau Delta International English conference with two classmates to present a comparative critical essay on John Keats’s “Old to a Nightingale” and Thomas Hardy’s “The Darkling Thrush.” The paper had been written in one of my University of Scranton English classes on late Romantic poetry and submitted thanks to reminders and information provided by our Sigma Tau Delta chapter leaders. The conference took place at a hotel in Minneapolis, Minnesota and the five day trip was fully-funded by the school, allowing us to take an opportunity that would have otherwise been finically unavailable to us. At the conference, we met and connected with other English majors and found the atmosphere to be welcoming and enthusiastic. It was interesting to be in an environment surrounded by people with similar interests.
The conference proved to be a mutually enjoyable and beneficial experience to all involved. We took advantage of the opportunity to attend various sessions that ran throughout the day. These included presentations of creative and critical work by fellow Sigma Tau Delta members. The presentations were stimulating and followed by moderated discussion. Additionally, there were roundtable discussions, as well panels headed by publicists and authors who gave valuable and practical advice. The conference included speeches and books signings by local authors Charles Baxter and Kao Kalia Yang. Their speeches were moving and sincere, and both authors were approachable and welcoming to students.
As a group, we enjoyed exploring the city in our free time and seeing local sights. Beyond being an enjoyable trip, the conference was a valuable learning experience in regards to future employment or education, which allowed us to present our works to a larger audience.
Thanks to Peter for sharing his experience, and congratulations to him for earning the opportunity to be part of such an event.