New News                

             Looking toward Fall '13

         With the conclusion of our final meeting earlier tonight, Eta Sigma Phi is done for 2012-13. Keep an eye out for a new, improved chapter website, which should be up and running by the beginning of fall semester 2013.  As soon as it's available, the link to the new site will be posted on this current site. 

         In the meantime, if you have any questions about who Eta Sigma Phi are and what we do, or questions about membership, contact new chapter co-presidents Lindsey McCoy (lindsey-mccoy [ατ] uiowa[δοτ]edu) or Janet Lawler (janet-lawler [ατ] uiowa[δοτ]edu).

-posted by Kyle on 05/09/2013 @ 01:44



                Old News                

             Final meeting of academic year 2012-13

         Our trip to La Clemenza di Tito at the Englert this afternoon was a success. Titus sure was a great guy.

          This means that the only Eta Sigma Phi get together remaining for this year is our last regular meeting of the year, which will take place on Wednesday, May 8 at 7pm in the Hoover Room, which is just two doors down the hall from our usual Kirkwood Room in the IMU.  We'll take a break from finals prep and paper-writing to have some general socializing and discussion of next year's plans, and there will be some tasty baked goods (please make and bring something yourself if you can!)  Meeting attendees will also be treated to the sight of a rare ceremonial event, an official handing off of The Binder to new chapter leadership.  Don't miss it!

-posted by Kyle on 05/05/2013 @ 20:02

             CAMWS over, great success

         CAMWS wound down and ended earlier today, and with it the busiest flurry of activity in Eta Sigma Phi's year.

The Homerathon was a success, as we stayed warm and dry inside Hotel Vetro, and finished in good time (6am-8pm).  Thanks to CAMWS and UI's department of Classics for allowing us the use of their reserved space in Hotel Vetro -- enduring 14 hours of Thursday's cold rain and wind wouldn't have been much fun. Thanks also to the students who came and read!

Our CAMWS volunteering effort was a success too, as we helped many visiting scholars find their way around Iowa City and the IMU.  We received many compliments from visitors about how helpful we were, and many compliments on how awesome our chapter t-shirts are.  Thanks are due to everyone who volunteered their time during the conference, especially to Lindsey and Janet for organizing the whole effort.

We're not done with this year yet!  Our next event is the spring Classics Coffee Hour, which will take place at 4:00pm on Tuesday, April 30th in the Department of Classics on the 2nd floor of the Jefferson Building.  We welcome short (~5 minutes) performances of poetry or music of any kind, as long as they're classics-related.  Readings from classical poets have been the most common contribution in past semesters, whether in Greek, Latin, or English translation.  Other past contributions have included original poems and songs with a classical theme and productions of translated selections of Greek drama.  Anything goes, really -- if you have something you'd like to read or perform, just contact Kyle and let him know (kyle-oskvig[ατ]uiowa[δοτ]edu).

Soon after the Coffee Hour, we'll be going as a group to take in UI's production of Mozart's opera La Clemenza di Tito, at the Englert Theater, on Sunday, May 5 at 2:00pm.  Yes, it's in Italian, but worry not, even if your Italian is as bad as mine -- there will be English supertitles. Admission for UI students is $5. If you want to come to the opera with us, contact Janet Lawler by mid-afternoon this Wednesday, April 24 (janet-lawler[ατ]uiowa[δοτ]edu). Janet will buy the appropriate number of seats all together, and we'll each pay her back for our ticket when we arrive at the show.

Finally, our last regular meeting of the year will take place on Wednesday, May 8 at 7pm in the Hoover Room, which is just two doors down the hall from our usual Kirkwood Room in the IMU.

-posted by Kyle on 04/20/2013 @ 21:44

             Convention trip success, CAMWS looms

         After a successful convention trip to Winston-Salem, NC, we're gearing up to help UI's Department of Classics host the CAMWS conference next week (4/17-20).  Part of that will of course be our Homerathon reading, which will take place on the Ped Mall on Thursday, April 18 from 6am to around midnight.  As of tomorrow (4/11), a sign-up sheet for 20-minute reading slots is posted in the Classics department office on the second floor of the Jefferson Building.  Another part of our volunteering will be to help visiting scholars find their way around town.  We have a list of volunteers, who will be contacted for their availability as soon as we have a list of places and times for volunteer stationing.

A busy month! So busy, in fact, that the regular meeting that had been scheduled for Wednesday, May 1 has been pushed back one week to Wednesday, May 8.  Note that we still have a meeting tonight (4/10) and next week (4/17).  The 4/17 meeting may be somewhat shorter and more focused than a regular meeting, since its purpose is just to finish last-minute preparations for the Homerathon and CAMWS volunteering.  I'll send an email in advance to let you all know what will be happening at that meeting.  In the meantime, hope to see you tonight!

-posted by Kyle on 04/10/2013 @ 14:41

             T-shirt order complete, national memberships available

         The t-shirt order is done!  They look great -- many thanks to chapter alum Christine Miles for the owl that makes the whole design go.

         At the next regular meeting (Wednesday 2/27 at 7pm in the Kirkwood Room, 2nd floor IMU), we'll be doing a sign-up for national Eta Sigma Phi membership.  The cost is a one-time fee of $40, and the benefits include eligibility for scholarships, subscription to the NUNTIUS newsletter, a membership card and certificate, and a shiny owl lapel pin.

-posted by Kyle on 02/20/2013 @ 23:24

             T-shirt orders being accepted until Wednesday, Feb. 6th

         The t-shirt order is underway!  They're $10 each. Click here for the final shirt design and ordering instructions. Just stop by the reception desk in 210 Jefferson Bldg. anytime before Wednesday, Feb. 6 to drop off your payment. Envelopes are provided at the desk; don't forget to include your t-shirt size and contact information!
        The shirts should be finished the week of Feb. 18, and everyone who ordered one will be contacted when they're ready. You'll be able to retrieve yours at either the Classics reception desk or the Eta Sigma Phi meeting on Feb. 27.

-posted by Kyle on 01/15/2013 @ 19:07


             Spring Meeting schedule released

         Check out the Meetings/Events page for the schedule of our regular meetings in Spring 2013, along with preliminary info on our two big events of the semester, the ΗΣΦ national convention trip, and our Homerathon reading and volunteering during the CAMWS conference here in Iowa City.

          Note that our first meeting is on the second day of classes -- Wednesday, January 23, at 7pm in the Kirkwood Room, 2nd floor IMU.  As promised at the end of last term, we should have a professional mock-up of our chapter t-shirt to show off by then, and the meeting will be a good place to put in your name (and payment) for a shirt.  More details on the t-shirt stuff will be posted here very soon.

-posted by Kyle on 01/15/2013 @ 18:02


             See you next semester -- with t-shirts!

         At our last meeting of the fall semester, we took the final steps toward finalizing our t-shirt project.  As soon as school is back in session for spring semester, we'll take a couple weeks to disseminate the design and cost info to anyone and everyone who might possibly be interested in ordering a shirt (the bigger the order, the cheaper every shirt gets).  Once we've got everyone's dough, we'll submit the order through Imprinted Sportswear in Iowa City. 

Right now, it looks like each shirt will cost around $9.  We'll probably charge $10 each, and use the profits to order a few extras for sale at the national convention (no doubt they'll be in high demand after we win the annual chapter t-shirt contest).  The final design will be a lot like the proposed design in the post below, but might change a bit (probably for the better) after the graphic designers at Imprinted Sportswear in Iowa City do their thing.  We'll get our hands on that final design for passing around to people in advance of the order.

Good luck with finals, and have a lovely break!

-posted by Kyle on 11/29/2012 @ 23:35


             Winding up the Fall semester, plus t-shirts

         The final regular meeting of the semester is slated for this Wednesday, 11/28, at 7pm in the Lucas Dodge Room, 2nd floor IMU.  The central order of business will be hatching a plan to get t-shirts printed and on our backs by the end of the semester.  Might be plausible, might not, we shall see. 

A draft of the proposed t-shirt design:


-posted by Kyle on 11/26/2012 @ 19:11


             Get added to the email list

         To anyone who checks this website for Eta Sigma Phi news, but does not receive update emails: just contact Kyle to be added to the email list.  Technical problems mean that sometimes (as in this recent month), the website is not updated as fast as it should be, but being on the email list will always keep you up to speed.

If you want to be added, just email Kyle and let him know (kyle-oskvig ατ uiowa dοτ edu).

-posted by Kyle on 10/02/2012 @ 11:35

             Study abroad info session, T-shirts, Odyssey, and more

         Study abroad in Athens sound interesting? There's a representative from College Year Athens on campus this week, and she's giving an info session at 5pm on Thursday, October 4 in room 220 of the Jefferson Building.  Our Classics Department is providing pizza.  Athens is a fantastic place for the classics-interested to study abroad, and there will also be information about study in Rome. Go check it out!

The owl that we'll probably use on the front of this year's shirts can be seen here. Cute. Artistic credit for that goes to recent alum Christine Miles. If you have witty ideas for the back of the shirt, send them my way or bring them up at the next meeting.

It's official -- Homer's Odyssey will be read at spring 2013's marathon epic event, a story of homecoming that fits well with the avalanche of UI alumni coming back for CAMWS. The title will therefore revert to "Homerathon" for the first time since 2010.  UI's Classics Department is aware that we want to make available a signup sheet for reading slots to professors who'll be attending the conference, and we're working together on finding the best way and time to send it out. It sounds like the marathon reading will attain status as a big event that's officially part of the conference festivities. This means, among other things, more customers for our bake sale. Is it illegal to randomly sell banana breads in the Ped Mall?  Hm.  We'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

-posted by Kyle on 10/02/2012 @ 11:31


             Fall semester begins

         We're back!  Our meeting schedule for fall semester has been posted on the Meetings/Events page.  The first meeting is next Wednesday, August 29 at 7pm, in the Lucas Dodge room, 2nd floor IMU.  Yes, there will be pizza!  We'll feed our faces, get to know each other, see how people's summers went, and toss around ideas for meeting activities this fall.  Later in the evening, we might hold an optional screening of "Wrath of the Titans" or the first episode of "I, Claudius."  As always, the meeting will be informal -- everyone is encouraged to come, even if they can't arrive by 7 or if they have to leave early.  If you can't make it, and you're not on the email list, but you want more info or want to stay in the loop with what we're doing this year, just drop me a line (kyle-oskvig[ατ]  Hope to see you at the meeting!

-posted by Kyle on 08/22/2012 @ 11:15

             OVID OVERLOAD 2012 success, next year's poetry reading

         The OVID OVERLOAD reading yesterday was an excellent success. The weather was warmer and drier than in past years, and we finished a bit early, just in time to escape the crashing downpour. In the aftermath of the reading, we met Dr. Molecule, who is just what we need.

Next year's iteration of this event will be on a far grander scale than ever before. We're planning to hold it sometime on the weekend CAMWS is visiting Iowa City (April 17-20, 2013), and have visiting classics dignitaries help read. We'll be going all-out on signage and promotion, including working with the city to get a permit for a small PA system. This will also be an excellent opportunity for some chapter fundraising, via bake sale or other means.  Lucan is an early candidate for the reading's content, although the Pharsalia seems too short for a marathon reading on its own. We may end up going back to Homer's Odyssey for the first time since 2009. The Odyssey's length is perfect (almost a little long), and the theme of homecoming would mesh well with the return of Iowa alumni coming back for CAMWS.

This concludes our chapter activities for 2011-12. Updates will be sparse through this summer, but we'll start ramping things up in August -- our goal is to make a big push for increased membership in 2012-13. Have a great summer!.

-posted by Kyle on 05/04/2012 @ 12:54

             4/25 meeting canceled, 5/2 meeting important


         The regular meeting scheduled for this Wednesday, April 25 has been canceled due to busy schedules and an early completion of some OVID OVERLOAD promotional materials.

Our last meeting of the semester will be next week, Wednesday, May 2 at 7pm in the IMU River Room I.  Please come to this meeting!  We'll be creating the final event materials for the next day's event, including two signs for display while the reading goes on, and just generally hashing out details to make sure the event runs smoothly. Hope to see you there!

-posted by Kyle on 04/23/2012 @ 18:35

             OVID OVERLOAD!

        Next week, Eta Sigma Phi is teaming up with the Department of Classics to bring you our annual marathon reading of classical poetry. The first ever OVID OVERLOAD will take place on the Iowa City Ped Mall on Thursday, May 3. The reading will be in English translation, anchored by Ovid's Metamorphoses, and is scheduled to last from 6am to 10pm. We'll hope for sunshine, but even if it pours, the show must go on!

If you'd like to take part in the reading, please stop by the Department of Classics office (210 Jefferson Building) to sign up for a slot. We'll be reading in 20-minute shifts, and you can choose one that fits your schedule. If you can't make it into the office to sign up, you can email to reserve your slot.

Even if you can't help out with the reading, stop by and listen -- we'll be there all day!.

-posted by Kyle on 04/23/2012 @ 18:28


             New chapter officers!

         Our two vacant consul positions have been filled by Janet Lawler and Lindsey McCoy, both Classical Languages majors who ably represented Iowa at the Columbia convention.  Congratulations, Janet and Lindsey!

The officers page will be updated with photos in coming days.

Also, our next meeting will be delayed a week, so mark it down: Wednesday, April 11 @ 7pm - River Room I, IMU.  The central piece of the agenda will be deciding on readings for the Department of Classics coffee hour, which takes place the day after the meeting.  We'll also talk about t-shirts and the ongoing flier design and text selection for our Ovid reading.

-posted by Kyle on 03/20/2012 @ 23:20

             Convention trip report


         The ΗΣΦ convention in Columbia was a runaway success, the best convention for our chapter in recent years.  As usual, our venerable status as the oldest chapter present gave us the honor of voting and speaking first. Kyle was elected to the national presidency, thanks to what everyone said was a wonderful support speech from newly minted chapter officer Janet Lawler.  There was a contest to name the ΗΣΦ owl (the one appearing on the logo, lapel pins, etc.), and Ryan Holley's suggestion of "Quisτίς" was voted the winner. He was recognized and awarded a golden, gem- and pearl-set owl lapel pin.  The "quis?" owl is of course a classic theme for Epsilon chapter's t-shirts, and the official, national appellation of the owl only accents the need for us to get going on new chapter shirts.  More on this as the semester rolls along.

Inter-chapter relationship building was another highlight.  We talked with the host Missouri chapter (Alpha Mu) quite a bit, and are beginning to toss about ideas for some joint events or meetings in the coming year. We also connected with the Hillsdale College contingent, a series of interactions which was amiable and educational.  As in past years, everyone we talked to who knew anything about classics at Iowa remarked on how good the people are here.   

All in all, a great trip.  We will definitely be sending a delegation to next year's convention -- early April 2013, at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

-posted by Kyle on 03/20/2012 @ 22:54

             Conference trips finalized


         We've finalized the details of our conference trips this semester.  The CAMWS trip to Baton Rouge has been called off due to a brutal combo of distance, cost, and inconveniently scheduled labs and exams.  But the Eta Sigma Phi convention in Colombia, MO is full steam ahead.  Huge thanks to the Department of Classics for helping fund the trip!  Our delegates will be Kyle Oskvig, Ryan Holley, Lindsey McCoy, and Janet Lawler.  Four is exactly the number needed for one full certamen (classics quiz bowl) team, and despite our lack of an all-around super-genius to carry us (like Claudia did last year in Austin), we will certaminate valiantly.

Also, there is a rumor that our hotel rooms will have moose heads in them.

A couple updates on events coming later in the semester: the Department of Classics coffee hour, along with our poetry reading, has been scheduled for Thursday, April 12 at 4:30pm.  Our marathon poetry reading will feature Ovid, and is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, May 3 from 6:00am to sometime in the late evening.  More info to come on both these events in a couple weeks.

Our next meeting is Wednesday, March 7 at 7pm in the IMU's Kirkwood Room (note that location, it's different from our past two meetings).

-posted by Kyle on 03/01/2012 @ 17:54

             First meeting goings-on


         At our first meeting last week, we decided to read Ovid at this spring's marathon poetry reading.  A tentative date is Thursday, May 3rd (the last week of classes before finals).  We read on that Thursday last year, and it worked out well.  Class schedules tend to be lighter for most of us on Thursdays, too.  We'll talk more about the date at our next meeting, and work on narrowing down a final roster of Ovid's poems to read.

We discussed the March conference/convention trips, and gauged pretty strong interest in the ΗΣΦ national convention.  CAMWS is a little uncertain as of yet; we'll try to nail down head counts before February is out, and see if there's sufficient interest to make the trip to Baton Rouge.

Finally, we discussed national membership in Eta Sigma Phi, which costs a one-time $40 fee, and opens up some great opportunities for scholarships and whatnot.  We'll try to nail down a head count on new members before the end of the month as well, so we can get the initiation form off to national HQ before the convention.

Our next meeting is Wednesday, February 22 at 7pm in River Room I, IMU.

-posted by Kyle on 02/07/2012 @ 14:45

             Meeting schedule for Spring 2012


         The meeting schedule for this semester is now up.  The first meeting will be this Wednesday, February 1, at 7pm in River Room I, IMU.  Agenda item #1 will be choosing a text for this year's Homerathon.

Due to room availability issues, we'll wait three weeks until our second meeting.  Regular bi-monthly meetings will also halt for most of March, as many of us will be away on the conference trips.

You can view the full semester schedule on the Events page.

-posted by Kyle on 01/25/2012 @ 15:37


             Spring semester planning

         Welcome back, everyone. We're starting to plan for spring semester. First of all, we may switch our regular meetings from Tuesday to Wednesday. Secondly, we're going to work on the details of sending delegations to both the Eta Sigma Phi convention and the CAMWS conference in the second half of March. Finally, we need to choose a text for our Homerathon reading in the first week of May. 

If you want to be actively involved this semester and Wednesday meetings will not work for you, please contact me.  We hope to have a semester schedule put together and on this site by the end of this weekend.  If all goes well, we may have our first meeting next week as well.

More updates to come!

-posted by Kyle on 01/17/2012 @ 16:47

             Tuesday, 11/15 meeting mostly canceled


         Due to the unavoidable absence of our chief movie review writer, and general pre-Thanksgiving break hijinks, the meeting for Tuesday, November 15th has been mostly canceled.  So it's postponed, you ask?  Kind of.  We have a deadline of this Sunday, November 20 for submitting our review of Immortals to the Nuntius newsletter.  So, Ryan and I will be meeting Saturday afternoon, November 19th to write the review.  If you came with us to see the movie -- or saw it on your own -- and want to pitch in, contact me, and I'll get with you about place and time for Saturday meeting. 

I understand that break will have begun at that point, at many people will have left town.  Don't worry about it if you'll be gone.  If you want to have some say in the review, email me your impressions, and we'll try to pass a draft by you before final submission.

-posted by Kyle on 11/14/2011 @ 23:48

             Immortals movie review


         I've worked out a spot in the upcoming NUNTIUS (Eta Sigma Phi's bi-annual national newsletter) for our chapter to write a review on the upcoming movie, Immortals.  We'll go to see it as a group on Saturday, November 12, and then put our heads together and write the review at our meeting the following Tuesday, November 15.  Details have been posted on the Meetings/Events page.

-posted by Kyle on 10/15/2011 @ 02:29

             Lysistrata performance October 20-23


         It had somehow flown under our radar until very recently, but we've just become aware that UI's Division of Performing Arts is putting on an adaptation of Aristophanes' Lysistrata next weekend (10/20-23).  We'll bring it up at our meeting this Tuesday, see how many people are interested in going to see it as a group, and try to pick a day that's good for everyone.  If you can't make the meeting but want to go see the play, email me (kyle-oskvig at uiowa), and we'll take your schedule into account as well.

If you want more info on the play, the production website is here.

-posted by Kyle on 10/14/2011 @ 16:11

             Tuesday lecture (10/18) and meeting


          We've had a lull in new developments lately, which accounts for the lack of updates here.  A few new things for us to be thinking about now, though.

First, we have an event/meeting this Tuesday, 10/18.  We're going to meet at the Main Library's Shambaugh Auditorium at around 7:15pm to hear a visiting Classics lecturer (details are on the Meetings/Events page).  After the lecture, we'll go out to eat somewhere downtown to discuss our impressions of it, as well as our involvement in the Music/Classics conference coming to Iowa City at the end of the month.

-posted by Kyle on 10/14/2011 @ 15:59

             Events update


          We've set up a couple new events in October, and the date for the departmental coffee hour has been set for November 10th.  The Meetings/Events page has been updated with all the info.

-posted by Kyle on 09/17/2011 @ 13:44

             Meeting place change - IMU

          We've been directed to the IMU for all regular meetings from here on out.  Farewell Schaeffer, we shall miss thy comfy new chairs.  Our Sunday meetings (there are only two) will be in the Iowa Room (#335).  All Tuesday meetings will be in the Wisconsin Room (#339).  See the Meetings/Events page for the full schedule.

Our first IMU meeting will be this Sunday the 18th.  If we can get the projector going, we might start watching I, Claudius.  Hope to see you there!

-posted by Kyle on 09/10/2011 @ 23:52 -- amended 09/12/2011 @ 22:27

             2011-12 chapter officers finalized


          Nicole Fields has been chosen to fill the vacant Consul office.  Congrats, Nicole!  The officers page has been updated accordingly.

-posted by Kyle on 09/10/2011 @ 23:47         

             Follow-up meeting


          Our next meeting is this coming Tuesday, September 6 at 7:00pm in 143 Schaeffer Hall. We'll follow up on the possibilities tossed about at the Opening Meeting, deciding on a new officer, movie titles and screening times, and the fate of the mosaic.

-posted by Kyle on 08/31/2011 @ 02:06


             Opening Meeting notes


          Thanks to everyone who came to our opening meeting!  Special thanks to Professor Ketterer for stopping by to tell us about the Music/Classics conference happening in Iowa City in October.  Stay tuned for more on that as it approaches -- we'll be involved and helping out however we can.

We discussed the open officer position.  Anyone interested in filling it should contact Kyle by or at the next meeting (Tuesday, 9/6).  The position will be filled as soon as the current officers come to a consensus following that meeting.

It was suggested that the BBC series "I, Claudius" be watched at our meetings, maybe spread out over the course of the entire academic year.  Stanley Kubrick's "Spartacus" is a movie-night possibility.  Gore Vidal's "Caligula" is not.

Our mosaic project is in danger of being resurrected.

And a full semester schedule will be available by this weekend, to be posted here as soon as it's decided.

-posted by Kyle on 08/31/2011 @ 01:51


             Opening Meeting, semester schedule


          The Opening Meeting for the 2011-12 academic year has been set: Tuesday, August 30 at 7:00pm in 143 Schaeffer Hall. Everyone is welcome!  Pizza and pop will be provided.  The meeting schedule for the rest of the semester is taking shape as well, though it’s contingent on room reservations that can only be finalized next week.

See the Meetings/Events page for more info.

-posted by Kyle on 08/23/2011 @ 02:30


             Formatting issue, start of semester


          I'm aware of a formatting issue visible on widescreen monitors. Odd, given my incredible web-design skills. But I'm working on fixing it.

Stay tuned for information on our opening meeting, and come by the Classics table (#7) at the college Open House on Friday!  Details for the Open House can be found on the Meetings/Events page.

-posted by Kyle on 08/17/2011 @ 18:41


             Website (more or less) finished 


          Fixed up a few things and filled in all pages with content.  Minus a couple forthcoming officer pictures, the site is essentially finished and ready for updates.  These will be regular and informative throughout the fall and spring semesters -- I hate outdated and useless websites.

-posted by Kyle on 07/12/2011 @ 17:26


Website up

          The website is up.  Hooray!  Maybe soon it will even be functioning properly. 

-posted by Kyle on 07/11/2011 @ 21:03





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