Huntington University will be sending 15 students to the Biennial Conference on Faith and History this year. This conference provides an opportunity for students to present their own research papers at the Undergraduate Student Research Conference, which will be held on October 3 at Calvin College. This year, HU is excited to send students with a wide variety of paper topics.

Senior Emily VanderBent will be presenting her paper, “The Evolving Role of Women in Espionage during the American Civil War.” The paper was written for Dr. Webb’s Civil War and Reconstruction class. VanderBent stated in an email interview that she wanted to shed some light on the roles women played in the past. She noted that they didn’t sit by while men made history; they were active participants in it, both behind the scenes and at the forefront.

Senior Nathaniel Fosnough will be presenting his paper called “Minimum Wage Policies: Effect on the American Household Income Gap.” Fosnough wrote the paper for Dr. Brown’s seminar in U.S. contemporary politics. In an email interview, Fosnough wrote that he chose this topic because of its relevance after the 2016 primary election discussions on how best to provide income to the impoverished.

Junior Ellie Lawson will be presenting a paper entitled “Pol Pot’s Cambodia and Social Mechanisms Used for Genocide,” which was written for Dr. Smith’s class on Cambodia: revolution and genocide. In an email interview, Lawson stated that her research focused on how the leader of Cambodia twisted and manipulated social constructs to commit genocide. This included “autogenocide,” which occurs when governments convince their own citizens to carry out genocidal acts on other citizens. Lawson chose this subject because she is interested in pursuing a graduate degree in Holocaust and genocide studies.

VanderBent, Fosnough, and Lawson all expressed gratitude for the opportunity to present their own research at the conference this month. Although the prospect of presenting in front of a large crowd may be nerve-wracking, each student recognizes that this is an incredible opportunity to share what they learned and to represent their university.