From November 9-12, 2017, hundreds of students and established scholars alike gathered at the Marriott Downtown in Chicago to participate in the 49th Annual Association of Slavic, East European, & Eurasian Studies (ASEEES) Conference. IU was well-represented with faculty, staff, and students presenting 24 papers and participating in over 30 panels and roundtables. Amongst the conference's most well-attended events was the IU Alumni Reception on Friday, November 10th. REEI Director Sarah Phillips welcomed reception attendees, provided updates on REEI activities, and directed attention to the IU Press book-signing event by faculty members Ben Eklof, Tatiana Saburova, and Marianne Kamp.
Also on hand was Kathleen Evans, newly appointed Director of the Summer Language Workshop, who addressed the crowd with an enthusiastic report on the workshop’s continued success and diverse and funding opportunities. In addition to those directly involved with the conference, a cohort of new REEI MA students packed into IU vehicles and trekked northwest to the Windy City to experience a preliminary taste of academia in their collective area of interest. Here, current and past REEI Hoosiers mingled, networked, and discussed mutual interests in the REE region. The IU Alumni Reception was co-sponsored by the College of Arts and Sciences Alumni Board, Department of Slavic and East European Languages and Cultures, IU Press, the Polish Studies Center, REEI, the Russian Studies Workshop, and Slavica Publishers.
The event formally concluded as Sarah Phillips expressed thanks to the alumni network of both REEI and IU, praising the opportunities provided via these connections and toasting the successes of the program and its alumni. The Alumni Reception and IU's large involvement within the conference were testament to the continued value of REEI in both academic and professional spheres, pointing to a promising future for the program and all involved with it.
Next year's ASEEES Conference, sure to include a number of IU and REEI-specific faculty and students, will take place December 6-9 in Boston, Massachusetts at the Boston Marriott Copley Place. The 2018 Conference Theme will be "Performance."