For the second year in a row, Missouri Southern State University’s Lambda Xi chapter of Sigma Tau Delta – the English Honor Society – will host the organization’s Midwest Regional Conference in a virtual format.
With the theme of “Revolutions and Renaissances,” the conference will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 26.
Marissa Baugh, the chapter’s vice president and lead organizer of the conference, said the theme was chosen to complement the 2022 international convention’s theme of “Action.”
“We didn’t want to copy their theme, but instead have something that would parallel it a little bit,” said Baugh, a senior English-literary studies major. “‘Revolutions and Renaissances’ is a broad theme that could be the European Renaissance or the Harlem Renaissance. They’re broad terms that encouraged submissions from different areas.”
The keynote speaker for the event will be Rilla Askew, an Oklahoma author whose writings often draw inspiration from the Four State region and its turbulent history.
“We had a virtual book club to discuss her novel ‘Fire in Beulah,’ which is set during the Tulsa Race Massacre (of 1921),” said Baugh.
In addition to Askew’s presentation, the conference will include four panel sessions. Topics will range from Edgar Allan Poe to an analysis of the themes in rap music, and the presentation of original poems and short stories.
Baugh said organizing the conference was a group effort on the part of the planning team which included Hunter VanValkenburg, chapter president and a senior English-creative writing major; Maya Strick, senior French major; Hailey Stamper, senior education major; and Baylee Harding, junior secondary education-English major.
“We had an initial meeting to figure out our theme, and then meetings just about every other week to iron out details like dates, a logo design, a call for submissions, organizing panels, and assigning faculty and student moderators to those panels,” said Baugh.
There is no cost to register for the virtual conference, which is open to all who are interested. To register, click here.