Students Showcase Work at the Annual Aspire Conference

Aspire, an annual conference hosted by the school of humanities, social sciences and education, was held on April 25 from 8:30 a.m. until 8 p.m.  According to Kathleen Dougherty, dean of Humanities, Social Sciences and Education,  Aspire is an opportunity for students to showcase work they have done in classes within the humanities realm.

“Students benefit from seeing the work other students are doing,” Dougherty said. “I think it is educationally inspiring. It is a great opportunity for faculty to engage with the students. It is also a great professional experience for the students … It helps them prepare for their futures.”

Aspire is based on nominations. In order to showcase your work, a professor from a class you have taken must nominate you.  You do not have to be a major in the school of humanities to participate.  

Sara Rubovits, a freshman double majoring in sociology and biology, presented her paper from one of her sociology classes based on the novel “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.”  She loved writing the paper because it combined both of her majors.

Rubovits thinks the conference is a great opportunity for students.

“It gives students a snapshot into the future,” Rubovits said.

Molly Hough, a junior majoring in history, created a poster using two poems she wrote in Introduction to Creative Writing.  These poems relate to her life experiences, and she enjoyed writing them.

“There are so many people who have different majors,” Hough said. “It is important to step outside of your major and see what different people think.”

Grace Brown, a senior studying art therapy, participated in the poster session with a poster that featured her poetry from Introduction to Creative Writing.  

“It shows people a chance to see what happens in different majors and different classes,” Brown said. “It gives student work a place to shine.”

Lindsay Bukal, a sophomore studying sociology, plans to use her presentation at Aspire to help her in the future.  Her presentation was about homelessness and what she can do to help the homeless community in Milwaukee.

“Homelessness is an ongoing problem that is not known to the community as much as it should be, and I am trying to fix it,” Bukal said. “In the future, I want to work with the homeless.”


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