Three sessions presented completely in Spanish at URCA


Three all-Spanish sessions were held at the Ashland University Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Symposium on April 9 as students spoke about their critiques on two famous Spanish films.

The Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Symposium showcased research that undergraduate students do on campus. Many subjects were covered during the symposium including communications, chemistry, English, political science, psychology, and Spanish.

This is the first year that three presentations were done completely in Spanish. However, these were not the first ever all-Spanish presentations in URCA history because 2014 Ashland University grad, Stefanie Stoops, presented completely in Spanish during her time at AU.

The three presentations were done by Jessie Ornelas, Tyler Easton, and Elizabeth Grim who are all Spanish majors at AU. They each focused on a Spanish film and critiqued the movies, presenting their opinions in Spanish to the audience.

Jessie focused on the film La Misma Luna and presented on the topic “A Realistic View on the Lives of Mexicans”. Tyler and Elizabeth focused on the movie Como agua para chocolate but Tyler’s presentation was on “Exploring the Feminine Symbolism in Como agua para chocolate” and Elizabeth’s was “Feminismo en Como agua para chocolate”.

Similar to any other subject being presented on at URCA, these three Spanish majors did the same amount of research, just in a different language.

“They read the original text in the foreign language,” faculty sponsor Jennifer Rathbun said. “They researched about it, wrote about it, and presented presentations in Spanish.”

The United States is listed as the second largest Spanish speaking country in the world and is why the sessions are so important for students, she said.

“The United States is the second largest Spanish speaking country in the world. We have over 55 million Spanish speakers here in the United States,” Rathbun said. “Not only is it an academic area of inquiry here on campus, Spanish is indeed one of the languages of the United States. It is quite common practice at symposiums to have sessions and tables in foreign languages and on the cultures and literatures of foreign languages.”

Barbara Schmidt-Rinehart, another Spanish professor at AU, said that she thought the day was a huge success.

“Jessie Ornelas, Tyler Easton and Elizabeth Grim were all excited to share their research with the community,” said Schmidt-Rinehart. “We thought the day was a huge success. We were able to spotlight our students’ work in Spanish and have plenty of people in the audience who understood.”