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MCCC Honors Students Participate in Statewide Conference


West Windsor, N.J. -- On April 12, five Mercer County Community College Honors Program students participated in the Bergen Honors Conference, which drew community college scholars from across New Jersey. Held at the Judith K. Winn School of Honors at Bergen County College, the daylong event showcased outstanding student scholarship from a wide-range of academic disciplines.

According to Diane Rizzo, an Honors English faculty member who accompanied Mercer's scholars, students competed for inclusion by submitting essays drawn from their coursework. Those papers were then judged based on their clarity, originality, level of analysis, and evidence of research.

"Even under those demanding guidelines, all MCCC students who submitted papers this year had their work accepted by the conference organizers," Rizzo said.

MCCC's student panelists included, from left, Brendon Pearsoll, Anderson Monken, Jillian Borrow, Dan Povio and James Reslier-Wells.

Students Jillian Borrow, Anderson Monken, Brendon Pearsoll, Dan Povio and James Reslier-Wells participated on panels relevant to their paper topics. Each was given 20 minutes to present his or her work.

Borrow presented her paper, "Kingston's Voice Thunders and Jingles Like Copper Pans," for a panel on World Literature; Monken presented “What America Can Learn From Confucius" for a panel on Individual Freedoms and Society; Pearsall presented "The Hero’s Journey as Motivation for Violence" for a panel on Cinema, Myth, and Violence; Povio presented “Self-Reliance in the Face of Fear” for a panel on Religion, Fear, and Consequences; and Reslier-Wells presented “Fear in Early American Literature" for the panel on American Literature and Race.

Rizzo said, "Our students’ work was well-received by their peers and by the Bergen faculty, who were impressed by the poise, confidence, and strength of conviction with which our students comported themselves."

In addition to Rizzo, MCCC Honors Program Co-Coordinators Bettina Caluori and Barbara Hamilton also attended the conference.

MCCC Honors Program

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