Undergraduate Research and Creative Work
Working in close collaboration with one another and with faculty members, English majors at Marist
actively take part in wider conversations surrounding poetry, fiction, and scholarship. The boundary
between the English classroom and the world beyond is a highly permeable one. Students read Civil War
literary works and archival materials, then travel to Gettysburg (pictured above, center) to see battle sites and
artifacts for themselves. Well-supported scholarly arguments and carefully crafted poetry are shared not
just with classmates, but with attendees at gatherings such as the annual conference of Sigma Tau Delta,
the national English honor society (above, right). Students share their innovations in digital forms as well:
click here to access Long Live the Book, an anthology of essays written by members of Dr. Angela Laflen's
Fall 2014 senior capstone course.
Students' recent activities demonstrate the wide range of interests a student may
explore within the English major. In Fall 2014, for example, three students worked
with faculty member Dr. Eileen Curley (above, right) on research that informed a
production of Tartuffe at Hobart and William Smith College. In addition to honing
their research skills, the students had the chance to see their dramaturgical
work in action within the staging of the play. In another example, Margaret Bruetsch '15
(at left) shared her stellar translation of the Old English poem "Deor" into folk song lyrics
when she traveled to an undergraduate medieval studies conference hosted at Iona
College. Such events help students glean new insights and meet kindred spirits from
across the region.
Of course, students also gain a great deal wandering farther afield. Student Melissa Mandia '17, who
traveled to Albuquerque with faculty member Dr. Michelle Smith and 9 classmates (pictured below, left) recalls,
"Meeting students from around the country in an academic environment broadened my horizons as to what
college students around the country are studying and I hope to return to the conference in the future."
Similarly, students who travel to Shakespearean sites in the UK (such as the restored Globe Theatre, below right)
report that the experience greatly enriches their understanding of the plays and whets their appetite for further
international travel. Kristen O'Brien '14 can attest to the addictive nature of this experience; having traveled abroad
for a semester in South Korea, Kristen returned there in Fall 2014 as a Fulbright Teaching Fellow.