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Undergraduates From Across Region to Share Findings at Social Science Conference

Posted Feb. 20, 2014

Undergraduate students and their faculty mentors, representing more than 25 colleges from across the region, will meet March 1 at the first Northeast Ohio Undergraduate Sociology Symposium in the Kent State University Student Center.

Titled "Engaging the Sociological Imagination", this one-day event highlights the scholarly works of over 60 undergraduate students representing more than 25 institutions and coming from as far away as the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.  Topics will include race, crime, inequality, gender, communications and the media, victimization and culture. 

The keynote speech will be given by Melinda Messineo, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Department of Sociology at Ball State University, during lunch starting at noon in Room 306 of the Student Center.  Her research focuses on race, class and gender in the media and the scholarship of teaching and learning. She teaches courses in the sociology of media, leisure, research methods, and is the recipient of the Lawhead Award in Teaching, the Excellence in Teaching Award, Outstanding Teaching Award (all from BSU) and the Schnabel Teaching Award from the North Central Sociological Association.

"We encourage students who have interests in sociology, criminology/criminal justice, gender studies, LGBTQ studies, and black studies/Pan-African studies to attend the symposium," Clare Stacey, Ph.D., a Kent State University associate professor of sociology and one of the event organizers, said.   "The symposium will provide students with an opportunity to present their work in a friendly and supportive forum and to network with faculty and students from across the region."

The symposium will feature papers, posters and other creative projects.  "Through this symposium we hope to promote professionalism within the discipline, encourage close collaborations between students and faculty, provide networking opportunities for students with other undergraduate students, graduate students and faculty from the region," Stacey said.

Distinguished Alumni Award
Kent State University will honor Betsy Lucal, Ph.D., professor of Sociology at Indiana University, South Bend, with its Distinguished Alumni Award during the lunch keynote session.  Lucal earned all three of her degrees from Kent State University (Bachelor of General Studies, summa cum laude and with honors, 1989; Master of Arts in Sociology, 1991; Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology, 1996).  At Indiana University, she also teaches in the Women's and Gender Studies and Master of Liberal Studies programs.

Registration
Online registration is required at the symposium web site: http://www.personal.kent.edu/~jleveto/.   The student registration fee is $20 and there are waivers available for graduate student volunteers.  The full-time faculty registration fee is $40 and part-time faculty fee is $25.  Scholarships may be available for undergraduate student presenters.  A light breakfast, lunch, and reception are provided as part of the symposium fee with all meals served on-site.

Those who plan to attend the optional Friday (February 28) Evening Welcome Reception from 5:00-6:30 at the Kent Hotel and Conference Center should RSVP to Clare Stacey, Ph.D., NEOUSS@kent.edu. Light refreshments will be served free of charge.

Donations
The symposium organizers are currently accepting donations at the event web site. The donations will go to undergraduate presenters who cannot afford registration fees.  Students with financial hardship who plan to attend are encouraged to contact NEOUSS@kent.edu to inquire about conference support.

Parking
Parking is available for KSU visitors. A parking map for visitors to the Student Center can be downloaded from the symposium web site: http://www.personal.kent.edu/~jleveto/.

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Media Contacts:
Clare Stacey, Ph.D., NEOUSS@kent.edu, 330-672-2044
Jim Maxwell, jmaxwel2@kent.edu, 330-672-0828