Huber wins second best

Melanie Mitchell, Copy Editor

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Twelve Members of the Francis Marion University (FMU) chapter of Phi Alpha Theta (PAT) History Honor Society traveled to LaGrange College in LaGrange, GA for the regional PAT conference where FMU graduate Philip Huber was awarded second best overall for undergraduate students for his essay presentation.

Four other FMU students, junior history major Mihai Birlandeanu, Holly Floyd, sophomore history major Josh Johnson, senior biology/pre-nursing major Jeff McCutchen and senior history Shellie Wills presented papers at the conference.

Huber graduated from FMU in December of 2012 with a degree in history. Prior to graduation, Huber submitted his paper entitled “Changing Tides: An Analysis of The New York Times’ Coverage of the Trent Affair” which was accepted to be presented at the conference. Huber said he was happy to find out his essay ranked second best overall.

“There was several other students there presenting their papers,” Huber said. “I was glad to know that mine was recognized as second best.”

Huber explained that the students presenting their papers were separated by subject. They presented to a panel of professors that were experts on the specific subjects and were judged based on their presentation. Huber’s article fell into the Civil War category.

“We were required to choose a topic that was covered extensively by either The New York Times or The London Times,” Huber said. “Since one of my favorite periods in history happens to be the Civil War, I chose the Trent Affair.”

As a result of his win, Huber is invited to present his paper in January 2014 at the National Biennial PAT conference in New Mexico.

Associate Professor of History Dr. Christopher M. Kennedy is the adviser for PAT. According to Kennedy, FMU has had winners at the PAT regional conference for several years.

“Our FMU chapter hosted the Carolinas regional two years ago,” Kennedy said. “We have had two of our undergraduates win in 2010 and 2011 the best overall undergraduate paper.”

In the past, students have traveled to the National Biennial conference in San Diego, CA and Orlando, Fl.  PAT has used Quality Enhancement Program (QEP) funds and proceeds from fundraisers to defray the cost. Kennedy said he is working to have students submit their paper proposals and abstracts to be considered and hopefully accepted to present at the national conference.

To get involved with PAT, students of any major and minor who have taken four classes in history and who have maintained a good GPA are invited to meet with inducted members in the student lounge and Dr. Kennedy in his office, Founders Hall 205

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