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April 8, 2005
Contact: Mark Nesbitt-Daly, Honors Program, (785) 864-4225.

300 regional honors students, faculty to attend conference at KU April 8-10


LAWRENCE -- The University of Kansas Honors Program will host the annual Great Plains Honors Council conference April 8 through 10 at the Kansas Union.

Approximately 300 students, faculty and staff from Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Iowa will attend the conference to present original undergraduate research and participate in workshops on community service and teaching and learning.

Kevin Willmott, KU assistant professor of theatre and film and director of the acclaimed film "CSA: Confederate States of America," will speak at 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 8, in the Big 12 Room in the union.

Tom Averill, writer in residence at Washburn University and a KU alumnus, will talk at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 9, in the union ballroom, as part of the conference banquet. Averill will discuss his collection of short stories "Ordinary Genius," published by the University of Nebraska Press in April 2005, and will appear as his famous fictional character-commentator William Jennings Bryan Oleander of Here, Kan.

Willmott's and Averill's talks are open to the public.

Two executives with the National Collegiate Honors Council will attend the conference: Virginia McCombs, NCHC president, of Oklahoma City University, and Patricia Speelman, NCHC executive director, based in Lincoln, Neb.

The Bowery Dancers of Lawrence will also perform after the Saturday banquet at the Kansas Union.

More information on the Great Plains Honors Council conference is available on the KU Honors Program Web site, www.honors.ku.edu/.

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The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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