Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Annual Atlantic Undergraduate English Conference

I mentioned in an earlier post that this was going to be a year of opportunities for me. This past weekend, I had an opportunity to represent Université de Moncton, along with three of my fellow English department students, in the Atlantic Annual Undergraduate English Conference that was held at Dalhousie University in Halifax.

On Friday night, we listened to Lynn Coady deliver a keynote address, approaching the topic of being unafraid to write despite having people against you. The next day opened the floor to the students from the Atlantic region, and I had the privilege to hear interesting papers about everything from mental illness through aerial dance, to comparisons of Monty Python's Life of Brian to the Second Shepherd's Play. Creative panels displayed the talents of students, who wrote about family war-time stories and read aloud their diverse and thought-provoking poetry.

On Saturday afternoon, I had the opportunity to read my own poetry in front of the crowd. Interestingly, that same day was my father's birthday. Allan Cooper is a poet, and because of him, I've been exposed to poetry my whole life. I have never read a selection of poems in front of others; I've always been reading just one or two. It seemed fitting that, on his birthday, I take the opportunity to read fully for the first time.

This weekend, it hit me just how much I miss being an English student. I'm still an English major, but I finished my required courses ages ago and am just ticking off all my necessary, required courses, now. I especially miss writing critical papers--analyzing works of literature, or articles, and trying to find the mysteries in each. I think I might do a few on here--for fun--over the next little while. Why not? I have a few ideas in mind already.

Attending and reading at this conference was a fantastic experience, and I highly recommend it to any Atlantic Canadian English student. Submit you paper or creative works next year, and take pride in your work!

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