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The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

English students present work at national conference

The visit to the conference comes after Sigma Tau Delta was established on campus in October. (Photo courtesy of Maria Cangro ’24)

Three members of the college’s new Sigma Tau Delta English honors society chapter attended the national society’s Centennial Convention in St. Louis, Missouri, last week, marking the first time that Lafayette students have attended the event. 

Madeline Marriott ‘24, Maria Cangro ‘24 and Paige Mathieu ‘24 presented their creative and critical works to panels in their respective categories.

“It’s really interesting to hear what people are thinking about and what kind of images they’re using,” Marriott said. “I think I definitely got inspired for my own writing with some of that.”

Marriott presented a critical essay entitled “Sweet Reluctant Amorous Delay,” on John Milton’s epic poem “Paradise Lost,” which discussed “the ways in which Milton puts this seventeenth-century sexual ideal into the Garden of Eden, which is supposed to be a place without shame,” she said.

Cangro submitted a manuscript of poetry and Mathieu a short story she wrote for an independent study.

“The theme was ‘In Flux,’” Mathieu said of the conference. “So for my piece that meant … how being in a relationship is in flux.”

“I looked at the manuscript I had, and I was like, ‘Oh, this seems to fit the theme,” Cangro said. Her panel category was ‘Original Poetry In Flux and Change.”

In addition to the student panels they were included in, the students had the opportunity to attend other panels as observers and keynote events that were held by a different poet each night. Speakers included critically acclaimed poet Donika Kelly, who visited Lafayette in 2022 as the judge of the H. MacKnight Black Poetry Prize, and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Carl Phillips. 

Enrico Bruno, a visiting assistant professor of English who spearheaded the start of the college’s Sigma Tau Delta chapter, knew he wanted students to attend its conventions since the chapter’s creation.

“When I was in the honor society as an undergrad, I went to the convention three times and those are some of my favorite memories from college,” he wrote in an email.

Overall, Marriott, Cangro and Mathieu all found the conference to be an enriching experience.

“The one thing that I really appreciated from this convention is that it gave us the opportunity as English majors to go out and present our work because I didn’t really see that as an opportunity so much before.” Mathieu said.

Disclaimer: Editor-in-Chief Madeline Marriott ’24 did not contribute writing or reporting. 

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About the Contributor
Natalia Ferruggia
Natalia Ferruggia, Assistant Culture Editor
I pronounce mozzarella correctly!

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  • R

    Richard MathieuApr 13, 2024 at 7:35 am

    What a wonderful opportunity for the students provided by Lafayette.