The 2012 Salt Lake Community College Student Conference on Writing and Social Justice (WSJ) will be held on Monday, April 9, 2012 at the South City Campus.
Presented by the English Department, this year’s conference theme is “Doing Democracy: Inclusive Civil Discourse.”
Leading up to the WSJ Conference, a series of online and in-person roundtable discussions will be held to engage student participation. Discussions cover topics center on civility, media, food, environmentalism, poetry and more.
SLCC English Professor Stephanie Maenhardt facilitated the first online discussion, “Media and Civility,” on Jan. 30, 2012 through Wimba, SLCC’s live online platform.
“I myself am blown away sometimes reading the posts people make online,” says Laura Gillette, in response to how Facebook and the Internet have changed our ethics via mass communication. “I think some people don’t realize that when you post something online it can pretty much be there forever, retrieved by anyone, seen by many people. A lot of people forget about their ‘ethics’ also when they are making posts, or so it seems.”
The discussion focused on civil discourse and social justice issues concerning individuals and institutions such as the media, school and work.
By taking a look at civility in the media and how it relates to social justice, students discussed the dangers and benefits of the media’s role in civil discourse.
More roundtables to come
There are six remaining roundtable discussions leading up to the conference.
“Environmentalism and Civility” is the topic of the next in-person roundtable. The discussion will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. on the Taylorsville Redwood Campus in the STC Multipurpose Room.
For those who can’t make it to an in-person discussion, they can check out the next online roundtable on Monday, February 27, 2012, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The topic for discussion is Eliza Griswold’s best-seller “The Tenth Parallel,” which explores the relationship between Islam and Christianity.
Student proposals wanted
Proposals for academic and creative works are now being accepted for the WSJ.
A student’s proposal should include a research paper, short film, poetry reading, or any other form of mixed media presentation that explores how writing is used to actively engage with the community.
There are a number of resources on the WSJ website to help students put together a proposal. A proposal workshop will be held from noon until 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 24, 2012, at the Taylorsville Redwood Campus in room AD 226.
Student presentations will kick off the conference at 2:30 p.m. Following the student presentations, there will be a community panel. Keynote Speaker Griswold will discuss social justice issues in line with the theme of the conference.
The full schedule with topic information can be found online at wsjconf.wordpress.com