Event To 'Talk' For Honors Program

After a “wildly successful” inaugural event, Sam Houston State University will bring together another group of widely renowned experts on a variety of subjects to discuss their areas during the second annual “Let’s Talk!” on March 19.

The event, which benefits the Elliott T. Bowers Honors Program, facilitates conversations with the experts, who lead a table of approximately 10 over dinner. It will begin at 6:30 p.m., with cocktails, in the Lowman Student Center Ballroom.

Twenty-five speakers from across the country, including many SHSU alumni and professors, will lead a wide-range of discussions, varying from serious national topics such as “Energy Sources—The Truth about Coal, Wind, Oil and Gas” and “The U.S. Banking Crisis” to more heartfelt topics such as “Words of Wisdom from a Real Tsunami Survivor” and “At the Death House Door” to lighthearted topics such as “Your Favorite Films and Why” and “Traditional American Cowboy Music: The Real Songs and Stories.”

Other discussions will include “Investigating the Russian Mafia,” “A Historical Perspective of Walt Disney Records and the Future of Digital Sales,” “From Victims to Criminals: How to Talk to Anyone (and Get Them to Talk to You)” and “Looking at Lincoln After 200 Years—Our Greatest President.”

“Our speakers continue to be outstanding and provide us with more diverse topics than even last year,” said Nancy Gaertner, “Let’s Talk” chair. “We will have everything from Disney records, the banking crisis, all the way to the Gillette brothers from Crockett, Texas. That shows how diverse our group is.”

Last year’s “Let’s Talk” event raised $55,600 for the Honors Program, which uses the money for scholarships, instructional support and operational costs.

“It was more successful than I could have imagined,” Gaertner said. “I still hear comments when I run into people about the evening and wanting to know about this year’s.

“If you went to every table, every table would have been different. Some people talked and laughed the whole night, it was very, very light; others had more serious discussions; other people left truly moved by their conversation,” she said. “It was a fun night.”

The money also allowed five honors students to attend the National Collegiate Honors Council annual conference, previously only attended by the Honors Program staff, with all expenses paid, according to Maria Holmes, honors admissions and advising coordinator.

“It was a wonderful experience as they were able to attend numerous workshops, present at two sessions, and serve as moderators. They were able to associate with honors students from several hundred universities from all over the U.S.—over 1,000 honors students, faculty and administrators attended. Presenting your work at a national conference is valuable as preparation for grad school or future jobs.”

“They would not have been able to go had it not been for the ‘Let’s Talk’ event,” Gaertner said. “It lets people know how you can do those extras that are so good for our students that you could not do without this extra money coming in.”

The full list of “Let’s Talk” discussion leaders will include:

Tickets are $100 per person. Honors student sponsorships are $100.

Sponsorships are also still available for $2,500 (bronze), $5,000 (silver), $10,000 (gold) and $25,000 (platinum).

All contributions over the value of the event, $50, are tax deductible.

For more information on sponsorships, contact Rhonda Ellisor at 936.294.4050 or rle005@shsu.edu or contact the Office of the President at 936.294.3415 or events@shsu.edu or visit www.shsu.edu/letstalk.


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SHSU Media Contacts: Jennifer Gauntt
March 2, 2009
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