The First Annual Student Research and Creative Arts Symposium at DEREE-ACG was held with great enthusiasm May 27-29, and featured inspiring and thought-provoking multi-media work by students from different disciplines and years.
Students, faculty and staff were able to enjoy a host of fascinating oral presentations and panels, for example, tackling such varied topics as “Interdisciplinary perspectives on reading and speaking,” featuring senior Maria Chioti’s presentation of her research on Attitudes toward received pronunciation and cockney accent, where she examined how British people perceive UK accents – who they find more agreeable, or who they would hire for certain jobs such as Public Relations, and so forth – for which she tested her hypotheses by interviewing British students and faculty at ACG – and further explained her methodology during the Q & A that ensued.
Other innovative and interesting presentations focused on “International Business and Human Resources” – including student Rosanna Mortoglou’s presentation of Greek Food Businesses in China, A Cultural Comparison, where she examined how Greek food companies – with popular traditional Greek products – are penetrating the Chinese market, and where the opportunities and challenges lie.
Symposium guests were also able to take in the impressive visual arts that lifted their spirits as they strolled through the Student Gallery, and stopped to look at and share their views on the myriad, colorful posters along the DEREE corridor, which negotiated different themes across disciplines, such as psychology and business. The DEREE Art Gallery hosted 54 inspiring and stimulating multidisciplinary creative projects by the Honors Program students, who were also on hand to answer questions about their work and approach.
Students, faculty, staff, and guests also enjoyed stellar music and theater performances at the 7th Level Auditorium and at the Black Box Theater, respectively.
Throughout the three-day symposium, DEREE Provost Dr. Thimios Zaharopoulos – who came up with the idea of a year-end Symposium, featuring a large and varied synthesis of presentations to reflect the outstanding abilities of DEREE students and the dedication of their supervising professors – was on hand to discuss the work with many students and faculty
Kicking off the Symposium, Dr. Evgenia V. Cherkasova, an associate professor in the Philosophy Department of Suffolk University in Boston, delivered a very inspiring keynote speech on “Open Dynamic Educational Project (ODEP): An Interactive Multimedia Model for Teaching and Learning in the Humanities,” at the Center for the Arts Auditorium, that was widely attended.
Dr. Anastasia Logotheti, one of the co-organizers of the Symposium and an associate professor in DEREE’s English Department, introduced Dr. Cherkasova and welcomed everyone “to our first symposium. This is a very exciting day for us here at DEREE, and we also have the pleasure of having with us Dr. Cherkasova….I want to thank her very much for coming and talking to us and informing us about a course she has developed.”
Dr. Cherkasova discussed teaching and pedagogical challenges faced by professors, through a presentation of her unique course “The Meaning of Life,” which she created through a grant by the National Endowment for the Humanities, in the US, and which she teaches at Suffolk.
Dr. Cherkasova described how she has created an multimedia site for the course, where she not only presents students with books, films, music, and other material in order to ponder on the perennial question, but also publishes their papers, and has even created a unique and fun online game, which she presented to the audience, and which allows her students to discover what philosophical school of thought they belong to depending on their answers to hypothetical situations: Stoic, Buddhist, etc.
“The challenge when you design a course like that is how do you manage this vast material,” she said, “and what do you expect your students to learn…the meaning of life?”
For more thought-provoking work by students, their supervisors, and guest lecturers, rendezvous at next year’s Annual Student Research and Creative Arts Symposium at DEREE-ACG!