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History students present papers at California conference

From left to right, Mallorie Oetman, Jared Huhta, Evan Wolford, Zeke Barber, Amy Snyder and Amy Landhuis. (Photo provided)

From left to right, Mallorie Oetman, Jared Huhta, Evan Wolford, Zeke Barber, Amy Snyder and Amy Landhuis. (Photo provided)

Six history majors presented their research papers at the Conference on Faith and History in Malibu, Calif. Sept. 24-28.

At this conference, history students and professors discussed Christianity and history and how the two relate to each other. Schools from all over the country were represented, and Pepperdine University held the biennial conference.

The university’s history department sent the students and three professors to the conference – Dwight Brautigam, Ph.D., Paul Michelson, Ph.D. and Jeffrey Webb, Ph.D. Seniors Zeke Barber, Jared Huhta, Amy Landhuis, Mallorie Oetman, Kelsey Snyder and Evan Wolford presented papers at the conference they had written for various classes.

“They had to submit papers for our review and receive approval from faculty,” Webb said. “This method prompted students to examine their own work and determine which of their research papers were presentable in a public academic forum—a kind of self-selection. The students who worked through this process were very motivated, and they represented HU very well among their peers from other institutions.”

Besides attending the conference, the group spent time at the beach, and they attended a Los Angeles Dodgers baseball game.

“It was great to be able to bond with the professors,” Snyder said. “I learned more about all the different places and things I could study. It was a real blessing to be able to go and not have to pay.”

Michelson said one of his favorite parts of the trip was “hanging around Malibu,” and Webb said his favorite part was spending time with the others in the group.

The best part of the trip was the bonding experience among the students and faculty in the department,” he said. “We traveled together in planes and vans and sat together during a number of paper sessions and plenary addresses. We also ate breakfast and dinner together and saw some sights in Southern California. It was a great time of learning and fellowship.”

The trip was covered by the Ron Frank Fund, “which is an endowment created years ago by generous alumni and friends of the department,” Webb said.

“It was awesome that we got to go and experience that, especially for our senior year,” Snyder said. “I’m thankful for the history department letting us go.”

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