START Conference Hosts Diversity Writing Contest

Diversity in business is an important aspect in today’s world, where globalization and assimilation are pertinent parts of corporate America. Considered a Smeal tradition now, START works to cater to “the need for open dialogue with professional and corporate leaders in order to create a productive and respectful work environment.”

Originating in 1999, “Striving Toward Awareness & Respect for Tomorrow” (START) is an annual, one-day conference that gives participants a better understanding of diversity in the business world today. This year, the conference will take place March 27 at the Nittany Lion Inn.

A major part of the conference is a diversity writing competition open to only Penn State undergraduate students. Contestants may chose to write any form of literature, whether it be a poem, short story, or a traditional essay, as long as it addresses the prompt.

This year, the topic is: “How is diversity depicted in the media? And how can it be improved?” The first, second, and third place finalists will receive cash prizes of $1,500, $750, and $500 respectively.

Submissions are due by Feb. 4, 2015 and will be narrowed down to three winners through a two-round system. If a submission makes it to the second round, the writer will be asked to give a presentation to the judges that will help determine the winners. The finalists will all be required to present their work at the START Conference in March, where they will be recognized as well.

For more information on the conference/contest, you can check out its site here.

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Rahi Nigam

Rahi is a sophomore majoring in Political Science with minors in Economics and Spanish. In his free time he can be found trying to figure out what to watch on Netflix or sleeping. Breaking Bad changed his life but so did Canyon Pizza. He’s also too hip to be hipster.


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