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Political science honor society hosts first ‘Emerging Minds’ conference

Published on April 11, 2024

Political science honor society hosts first ‘Emerging Minds’ conference

Student Will Engle speaks at the first Emerging Minds conference, hosted by Eastern's chapter of the Pi Sigma Alpha political science honor society on April 5.

Student Joy Grillo presents creative work on biracial identity in the U.S.

Student Larraine Rubacha presents her research.

Student Jordyn Szretter presents on the legality of sports betting in the United States.

Student Gaby Varela presents on her internship experience at Grow Windham.

Eastern Connecticut State University’s political science honor society hosted a conference “for students by students” on April 5 in the Science Building lobby. The inaugural "Emerging Minds” showcase offered a platform for students to present their research, creative work and internship experiences related to political science.

“Our event was organized to provide a low-stakes, high-reward opportunity for students from various disciplines to showcase their valuable insights among peers,” said Will Engle ’24, the society’s vice president and treasurer.

Alpha Beta Gamma, Eastern’s chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, organized the event using a national Pi Sigma Alpha grant. This grant aims to enable chapters to undertake projects with a broader scope than they would normally be able to afford. Through this grant, the society was able to fund monetary awards for the event’s top three contestants and a networking session over a spread of food.

Student Frida Nieto-Gonzalez presents her research.

Student Christian Deras-Rodriguez presents his research.

The event was a great success and showcased presentations from nine students representing nine majors at Eastern, all with work in political science. The presenters provided valuable insights on a diverse range of topics, including immigration, racial identity, LGBTQ+ issues domestically and internationally, the political significance of peace, sports betting legislation and artificial intelligence in the social sciences. The event drew a crowd of more than 50 people.

“‘Emerging Minds’ marks such a milestone for both Pi Sigma Alpha and Eastern alike,” said Engle. “We’re so proud of all of our presenters who showcased their exceptional work.”

Written by Katherine Escalante