Holy Cross Academic Conference to Showcase Student Work

300 students, including Fenwick Scholar, will present results of research, independent projects

April 19th, 2013 by Nikolas Markantonatos


As the academic year concludes, the College of the Holy Cross will host its annual Academic Conference from April 24 through April 27. The four-day conference provides students with an opportunity to present the results of their independent work and for the entire community to celebrate the relationship between Holy Cross’ liberal arts curriculum and the learning taking place in varied environments — from Study Abroad to the Worcester community; from research labs and art studios to libraries and field sites.

The programs, projects, poster sessions, and performances presented by students at the conference were developed with the guidance of faculty members. The conference showcases the independence, creativity, and intellectual discipline of students, as well as the role professors have played as mentors and model teacher-scholars.

Approximately 300 Holy Cross students from all classes are involved in the conference this year. Academic Conference 2013 is free and open to the public.

The conference includes works from the arts, social sciences, humanities and natural sciences. Students will present an array of topics including:

  • “Making Liberalism Work: Rawls, MacIntyre, and Ratzinger on Justice, Moral Disagreement, and the Good,” Travis LaCouter ’13
  • “Answering God’s Call: A Catholic’s Response to Violence and War,” Frances Klimczak ’13
  • “The Road to Each of Us: Character, Place, and the Writing of Contemporary Fiction,” David Cotrone ’13
  • “The Missing Voice in the Epidemic: Experiences of Living with HIV/AIDS in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,” Kathryn Chobanian ’13
  • “Post-Genocide Rwanda’s Economic Growth and Its Democratic Issues,” John Rubayiza ’13
  • “Long Has Become Too Long: A Close Look at Unemployment Transition Rates in the 2007-2009 Recession,” Elizabeth Sundheim ’13
  • “Housing and the Econ Crisis,” Daniel Lautenschlager ’13
  • “Perceptions of Body and Health Within the Homeless Community,” Jonathan Kassira ’14
  • “K-Pop Phenomenon,” Sharice Styles ’14
  • “Cerebral Aneurysm Neck Reoccurrence After Endovascular Coiling Following Subarachnoid Hemorrhages,” Bailey Proft ’13
  • “Is it Safe to Play Outside? Exploring Limitations on Children’s Free Play in Low-Income Neighborhoods,” Megan Lynch ’13
  • “The Masks of T.S. Eliot and Bob Dylan,” Rebecca Castellani ’13
  • “Analysis of the Structure and Activity of Hedgehog Domains and Inteins,” Sarah Cahn ’14
  • “Social Security and Insurance,” Mariah Napolitano ’13
  • “It’s Only Human: A Defense of Theatre’s Necessity,” Christine Freije ’13

The conference will open with a lecture by this year’s Fenwick Scholar, Gregory Peters ’13, a psychology major with concentrations in premed and biological psychology. The Fenwick Scholar Award is one of the College’s oldest and most prestigious academic distinctions. Departmental nominees design, with several advisors, a program of study leading to a significant research or creative project that will be an entire senior-year curriculum.

His lecture, “Schizophrenia in Research and Practice: The Case for Conceptual and Methodological Pluralism” will be presented at 4 p.m. in the Rehm Library on April 24.

Peters, who is from the Bronx, spent the academic year working with numerous professors, including Alo Basu, assistant professor of psychology; Gregory DiGirolamo, associate professor of psychology; Daniel Bitran, professor of psychology; Andrew  Futterman, professor of psychology; Suzanne Kirschner, associate professor of psychology; Rev. William Stempsey, S.J., professor of philosophy; and Renée Beard, assistant professor of sociology.

A reception, open to the entire Holy Cross community, will follow the lecture at 5 p.m. in Moran Lounge, on the fourth floor of Smith Hall.

Other highlights of the conference include:

  • On April 25, 11 studio art majors will participate in “The Fruits of Chance & Necessity,” the annual exhibition of artwork by graduating seniors who have participated in the Senior Concentration Seminar, at the Cantor Art Gallery. The opening exhibition and reception for the artists will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Preceding the opening will be presentations by the students from 12 to 1 p.m. The exhibition will be open to the public through May 24.
  • Three music events will take place in Brooks Concert Hall. On April 24 at 8 p.m., there will be a Chamber Orchestra concert. On April 25 at 8 p.m., there will be a Chamber Music Festival. Finally, on April 25 at 6 p.m., Patrick Chiarolanzio ’13 will perform his senior recital.

The conference is sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Dean of the College.

Academic Conference Program 2013 [PDF].

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