ASPIRE Presentations


Ashley Lauro

Senior Samantha Hince presenting at ASPIRE on “Writing Center Resources,” in FLC room 215.

Bridgewater, Va.- Bridgewater College held its annual ASPIRE conference from April 11-13 to showcase student research, faculty research and, for the first time, creative literary arts presentations from faculty and students. 

To guide attendees through the conference, booklets were available with the schedule, list of presenters and a brief description of each research project being presented.

The conference took place in rooms throughout the FLC and McKinney Hall with multiple sessions, sometimes overlapping, each evening and afternoon. Additionally, posters were on display in the KCC lobby throughout the conference.

“This is the first year that we’ve done a creative arts presentation for ASPIRE because other creative venues have disappeared over recent years, largely due to the pandemic. We wanted to make sure there was an opportunity for creative artists to display their works,” said Professor of English Stanley Galloway, who presented his own poems alongside students from his poetry class.

Many of the events, including the literary arts presentations, were held in FLC 217, which is the smaller of the two classrooms in the FLC. Due to this, at points during the presentation, there was only standing room available.

“It was really fun,” said sophomore Logan Mae Lotts, who presented her poem “Sorry, Can’t, but XYZ.” “I was really nervous at first, but I was happy to see a full room of people that attended the event.”

After each presentation, members of the audience were allowed to ask the presenters about their projects.

Because this year’s event was held in-person for the first time since 2019, organizational procedures for ASPIRE still need hammering out.  

“We could have been more informed about where we were presenting and how it would be formatted,” said senior Macauley Calhoun, who presented his honors project: “Explaining the Fanaticism of the Imperial Japanese Military During the Pacific War.” “I also felt the entire conference could have been advertised better.” 

“For my day of presentations, we ended up having to move from McKinney 100 because of technology issues so that wasn’t particularly planned out it seemed,” said junior Emily Schloss, who presented on “The Interaction Between Metabolic Rate and Limb Regeneration in Axolotls.”

The final component of ASPIRE, the senior art majors’ thesis oral presentations, takes place on April 26, beginning at 5 p.m. at multiple locations throughout campus.