Scholars and Brownies? The St. Luke’s Scholars Symposium is Back in Person


SLS Scholars Symposium

Laura Haley '23, Voices Editor

After two years of school events taking place on Zoom, this year’s Scholars Symposium was back on campus. With topics ranging from Madden Hart’s Civil Liberties in Russia (a particularly timely topic) to Sophie Blomberg’s Placebo Effect of Pre-Workout in Athletic Performance, this year’s 25 scholars brought their research, extensive knowledge and polished presentations to parents, students and administrators. 

The Global, STEM and Classical scholars brought new topics and ideas to the table; however, the overarching theme of each stayed the same. Global scholars endeavored in an analysis of a global issue; STEM scholars dove into topics that incorporated science, technology, engineering and mathematics; and this year, the Classical Scholars program, a project for those interested in Latin or Greek had no participants. However, the original three programs gained an addition this year. With a focus on literary research and analysis, the Literary Scholars program made its debut with three students, each presenting a unique topic. Emilia von-Lilien Brockmeyer researched Victorian women, Karey Balkind explored literary icon Ernest Hemingway and his struggles with masculine identity, and Liz Fliescher examined dystopian novels. 

Liz Fleischer said, “It was great being part of the first year [of Literary Scholars] and getting to have a completely new experience.” Although she did note that it was sometimes challenging that Literary Scholars did not meet regularly, this feedback has been heard. Next year, Literary Scholars will be built into students’ schedules as a full-time class. To all incoming scholars, Liz offered some words of wisdom: “Don’t put it [your research] off. Whenever you have free time, work on it. It will really help you a lot.” 

Kielan Rosow, who explored the legal and ethical implications of surveillance technologies, described the environment in the Global Scholars program as being “supportive, and very lowkey.” He added that he appreciated the feedback that he got in the classroom and commented, “You get to know everyone’s topic really well.” Not only do the scholars experience an individual quest for learning, but as they review their peers’ work, they get the opportunity to learn about other people’s  topics. After two years of doing presentations either online or masked, Kielan highlighted that the program  gave scholars the opportunity to practice presenting in front of teachers and peers before the symposium. As a result, Kielan mentioned “[I] did not find it different or weird, [I] did have some practice”. 

This year’s Scholars Symposiums’ intriguing topics, turn away from Zoom calls at home and welcoming of an indoor, maskless and brownie serving event made for a truly special welcome back for administrators, students and parents. For Scholars, it was an opportunity to display their hard work, talent and discipline to a group of smiling faces instead of the blank zoom squares we all know too well. 

If you want to check out this year’s scholars’ presentations, video recordings, photos and other information about the scholars and their work can be found here.