The Festival started with the Opening Gala on April 3, with refreshments and keynote speaker Dr. Mary Helen Immordino-Yang from the University of Southern California.
Carly Olsen, who presented a paper titled Futility and Failure: The Presence of the American Dream in the Gothic Genre, said it was comforting to see familiar faces while she was presenting and the Festival provides a good opportunity for all involved.
“I think it gives students the opportunity to present their own work and get comfortable with the idea of presenting,” Olsen said. “For people who just want to view presentations, I think it gives them the chance to see what other people are doing and maybe spark some ideas.”
Saski Koch, whose presentation was called Shakespeare and Beyond: Fear Rhetoric of Dystopian and Anti-Utopian Concepts, said the Festival is unique to SUU and gives students a chance to see what others in their majors are working on.
“I like the idea that I could show other English majors, or someone who’s maybe thinking about becoming and English major, what we work on and how far you can come,” she said. “You can work on something that actually interests you, not just what someone tells you to.”
Posters were displayed in the ballroom of the Sharwan Smith Student Center from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., and 15-minutes presentations were delivered all day throughout campus.
Project classifications included community engagement, creative expression and analysis, global engagement, leadership and entrepreneurship, scholarship of teaching and learning and outdoor engagement, among others. Students were highly encouraged to attend to see what others were working on and support their peers.