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The lunch crowd found more than the usual fare to digest on April 24th, as they strolled through the Second Annual Student Showcase presented by the Nichols Academic Resource Center (ARC) in the Ingraham Room, adjacent to the Lombard Dining Hall.
Using everything from poster board to multimedia presentations, Nichols students shared some of their proudest work from the past year. The 15 exhibits ranged from personal writing and service projects to creative presentations—much of it produced for class—as the authors stood by, explaining their approaches and answering any questions.
“I saw that there was a need to recognize student achievement in academics outside of grades,” said ARC Director Marissa Loon, who introduced the showcase last year. “We do a lot to recognize student leaders and student athletes. I saw an opening to say to students, ‘We care about this things you’re doing academically.’ Students have amazing things to say, but people don’t know about it because it goes on in the classroom.”
While some of the exhibits included neatly displayed literary analyses, poems, and short stories, others used laptops and video screens.
Senior Anne Geiwitz drew a stream of visitors to her exhibit exposing loopholes—in the name of scientific study—used to circumvent worldwide bans on whaling. With a PowerPoint presentation as well as videos on a nearby laptop, Geiwitz highlighted the problem, as well as the efforts of anti-whaling groups to disrupt the practice, often by setting off nearby fireworks to steer whales away from potential captors.
“There’s not only human genocide in the world. There’s also animal genocide,” Geiwitz explained to her listeners. “This is something that needs to be addressed.”
“The idea is to showcase what our students are doing and to give them a public forum. It’s nice seeing them engage people they might not otherwise engage and to see them speak knowledgably about something like a PowerPoint or a video,” Loon observed, adding that the participants may eventually employ those presentational skills in the workplace.
Freshman Lindi Bedore shared a collage of pictures from the Nichols College Alternative Spring Break, for which she and a group of fellow students went to New Orleans to help rebuild houses still in disrepair from Hurricane Katrina years ago.
At another booth, senior Jonathan Cawley ran and re-ran a video of his performance in a recent modern dance class. “I usually do hip-hop, but this is a more slow, flowing type of modern dance,” he noted, pointing to himself onscreen. “I chose this one because it was out of my element.”