Outstanding Chapter of English Society Heads to National Conference
March 14, 2007
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Illinois Wesleyan University’s Alpha Eta Pi chapter of Sigma Tau
Delta, the international English honor society, will send two student representatives
to the Sigma Tau Delta annual international convention, this year to be held March
28-31 in Pittsburgh, Penn.
Although IWU has previously sent student presenters to this conference, this year
is especially important, because Alpha Eta Pi was recently named one of two outstanding
Sigma Tau Delta chapters nationwide. The Outstanding Chapter award is presented annually
to chapters that have demonstrated outstanding motivation, creativity and service.
Founded in 1924 at Dakota Wesleyan College in South Dakota by Judson Q. Owen, a 1913
graduate of Illinois Wesleyan, Sigma Tau Delta seeks to confer distinction upon outstanding
students of the English language in undergraduate, graduate and professional studies.
IWU's Alpha Eta Pi chapter, founded in 1998, is one of more than 600 chapters worldwide.
Rachel Shulman, the chapter’s co-president, and Amanda ReCupido, an active member,
will represent the chapter in Pittsburgh.
ReCupido, a senior English major from Hoffman Estates, Ill., will present a series
of three poems titled, collectively, “Postcards.” The first poem, “After AVA,” was
inspired by Carol Maso’s novel of the same name. The second poem, “What Remained,”
uses a multiple choice test format to reflect on a relationship. “India,” the final
piece in the series, was featured in the fall issue of Tributaries, IWU’s semiannual creative arts journal.
Shulman will read an academic paper, “Men’s Aversion to Home in Joyce’s Dubliners.” Analyzing three of the works in James Joyce’s short story collection, Shulman
explores the way that Joyce’s protagonists avoid their homes, which have become oppressive
prisons rather than restful havens.
Chapter co-presidents Shulman and Anne Wilkinson, an English writing and French double
major from Hopkins, Minn., applied for the award in October with the guidance of faculty
sponsor Mike Theune, associate professor of English.
The application consisted of a summary of the chapter’s accomplishments over the last
school year, under former executive board president Megan Mondi, class of 2006. Last
year the chapter successfully co-hosted its first regional undergraduate literature
conference and also established an English Department journal. Other activities included
coordinating book clubs, organizing student and faculty research colloquia and collecting
books and money for various charitable causes.
As an Outstanding Chapter, Alpha Eta Pi will receive a $350 award and plaque and the
opportunity to share chapter activities and achievements with other chapters through
an information table at the convention. The chapter will receive an additional award
for sending at least one member to the Sigma Tau Delta annual business meeting, which
will take place at the convention.
Contact: Rebecca Welzenbach, (309) 556-3181