Member JoAnn Wallace introduced our speaker Les Rose, Professor of Broadcast and Digital Journalism at SU's Newhouse School, whose presentation was entitled "Behind the Lens." Professor Rose was a photojournalist for CBS News and covered many major events such as 9/11 in Shanksville PA, civil wars in Nicaragua and El Salvador, the LA Riots, and numerous worldwide disasters and events along with major sports events, celebrity interviews, and many more assignments, earning several awards along the way. He entertained and delighted our members with stories both humorous and serious about his 30 years in news broadcasting.
February's topic was Celebrating Shakespeare with speaker Matt Phillips, Shakespeare Competition Advisor, Jamesville-Dewitt High School. Mr. Phillips has long been active as an advisor in the annual high school Shakespeare Competition, along with teaching courses in English, drama, film, journalism, creative writing, and Syracuse University's Project Advance.
Mr. Phillps, introduced by Syracuse ESU's Shakespeare Competition co-chair Barbara Weller, demonstrated that a cold reading of a Shakespearean play is not the most effective way to improve student understanding of Shakespearean language. To illustrate this, he distributed copies of a brief scene from Much Ado About Nothing for an oral reading. Then he showed videos of five diverse interpretations of that same scene by separate professional actors. Those videos clearly improved our understanding of the wordplay between Beatrice and Benedict. At the conclusion of the presentation, everyone had a much clearer grasp of the relationship between the characters in that scene. (Thank you to ESU member Judy Carpenter for her photos and description of Mr. Phillips' demonstration).
We were also treated to a presentation of a monologue by Anka Chiorini, the 2021 and 2022 Syracuse Branch Regional winner and a finalist in the National Competition in New York City.
In January we were fortunate to host Shane Mahar from the NYS Canal Corporation. He was joined by Joell Murney-Karsten who deals with community and government relations through the Canal Corporation's Syracuse Regional Office Mr. Mahar spoke on New York's Canal System, informing us that "the New York State Canal Corporation operates and maintains four historic canals: the Erie, Champlain, Oswego, and Cayuga – Seneca. Spanning 524 miles, the waterways link the Hudson River with the Great Lakes, the Finger Lakes and Lake Champlain, and connect hundreds of unique and historic communities across upstate New York." Attendees also learned about the Empire State Trail's Reimagine the Canals initiative and the free "On the Canals" excursions that attract thousands of people to the canal corridor each year. Pictured are Mahar, ESU member Shirley Cruikshank who introduced the presenters, and Murney-Karsten.
The ESU celebrates English as a shared language to foster global understanding and good will by providing educational and cultural opportunities for students, educators, and members.
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