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Academic Festival 2013 packs a punch

April 30, 2013

Academic Festival 2013 packs a punch

April 30, 2013

library exhibit, academic festival 2012
Library exhibit draws visitors at
Festival 2012.

Showcasing the best work of the year in fields of study from chemistry to business to art history, Skidmore’s 15th annual Academic Festival features more than 25 presentations by some 150 students. The all-day campus-wide event takes place May 1, with sessions at 9 and 10:15 a.m., a free pizza lunch and a trivia quiz led by Skidmore’s Literary Society, interdepartmental student roundtables on civic engagement and other projects at 1 p.m., further academic sessions at 2:15 and 3:30 p.m., and a first-ever closing reception at 4:30 p.m.

A faculty, staff, and student committee, chaired by Periclean Honors Forum director and English Professor Catherine Golden, worked with Academic Council to shape the festival with the tagline “Excellence matters.” Golden says the organizers were excited about their work to “bring the Skidmore community together to celebrate our students’ achievements.” This year, she explains, “We’ve structured it like a professional academic conference. Departments and programs selected their very best students, and we’ve designated four time slots, with no more than eight concurrent presentations.”

Choosing which to attend could still be tough, as topics include the economic efficiency of wolf hunting; Skidmore-Saratoga Entrepreneurial Partnerships, including consultations for the Inn at Saratoga and a horse rehab nonprofit; 3D shape perception; the physics of stars, sediment and smectics (in liquid crystals); “makeshift memorials,” “gendered altars,” and other issues in religion; narcotrafficking in Colombian literature; zebrafish spinal-cord analysis through videography; apologies and customer service; and sustainable-growth programs in sub-Saharan Africa.

Partnering with the festival again this year is “Masterworks,” a showcase of final projects from Skidmore’s master of arts program in liberal studies, on May 2. The master’s students’ topics include Adirondack oral history, cognitive dissonance in hypnosis, and biracial identity issues.

All sessions are open to the public; details and locations are listed here.



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