ECU poli sci major serves as DNC delegate

ECU junior Uriah Ward attended the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte as the youngest delegate from North Carolina’s 3rd District.

Ward is working toward a bachelor’s in political science at ECU, where he also serves as president of the College Democrats. He expected to be joined by several other ECU College Democrats to hear President Barack Obama accept the Democratic Party nomination.

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Duke professor to speak on origins of the banjo

Laurent Dubois of Duke University will deliver a public lecture entitled “The Banjo: Roots and Routes” at 5 p.m. Oct. 3 in Brewster B-102.

Dubois is the Marcello Lotti professor of history and romance studies at Duke University. He is a world-renowned expert on the Haitian Revolution, the French Empire, and the Enlightenment in a global perspective.

His most recent manuscript, “Haiti: The Aftershocks of History,” (featured in the New York Times Review of Books) studies independent Haiti and focuses on the historical roots of contemporary society.

Dubois’s lecture will argue that today, the banjo’s sound is synonymous with country, folk and bluegrass. Yet its origin lies in Africa, in various instruments featuring skin drum heads and gourd bodies. His lecture proposes that the banjo offers a powerful way to understand the broader processes of exchange, crossings, and creolization in the Atlantic World and the Americas. By listening and watching the banjo, we get a different perspective on the idea of America, one that emphasizes the ways in which our culture has been shaped by constant crossings between Africa, the Caribbean, and North America over the past centuries.

The lecture is free and open to the public. It opens the Atlantic World Speaker Series at ECU. For more information, contact Dr. Anoush Terjanian, Department of History, East Carolina University, TerjanianA@ecu.edu, 252.328.6093.

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Hero, activist Eric Alva to appear at ECU

Military hero and gay rights activist Eric Alva will present, “The End of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’” at 3 p.m. Oct. 3 in Room 244, Mendenhall Student Center at East Carolina University.

The first American soldier injured in the Iraq War, Alva was hailed as an American hero. Upon his retirement from the military, Alva came out as a gay man. He became a gay rights activist and spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign, where he speaks about LGBT issues and the military.

Alva worked with Congress to repeal the controversial “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy that prevented openly homosexual or bisexual individuals from serving in the U.S. military.

The event is sponsored by the Student Affairs Continuing Career Development Committee. Registration is available on OneStop under the university training tab

For additional information, contact Dean Smith at (252) 328-4703 or David Gaskins at (252) 328-6387.

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Society of Women Engineers to meet Sept. 28

The Society of Women Engineers will celebrate the chartering of its local chapter at 10 a.m. Sept. 28 in Mendenhall Great Room #1.

The chapter was officially recognized this summer by the national chapter. The group supports women in engineering, a field that has traditionally included only about 20 percent female students and a smaller percentage of women engineers in practice.

The chapter also serves to highlight ECU’s engineering program, which enrolled its first students in 2004. More than 450 students are enrolled in the program in fall 2012.

For more details about the organization, visit http://www.ecu.edu/news/womenengineers.cfm.

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