Organized by the Spanish programs at USD, the University of Sioux Falls and Briar Cliff University, the SUR Conference, which is sponsored by the USD College of Arts & Sciences and the Office of Diversity at USD, will provide students a forum to share their research interests in Spanish with undergraduate students of seven universities. Papers will be presented in Spanish using various disciplines of the Spanish-speaking world, including the indigenous cultures of Latin America, Hispanic literature, colonial history of Latin America, social issues, immigration, art and religion.

“This is a great opportunity for our students to be active participants in a conference and to share their intellectual interests, to meet other students and professors, and to network,” stated Ángela Helmer, Ph.D., assistant professor of Spanish at USD. “It's also a great platform for them to showcase, in Spanish, their research interests and their accomplishments as Spanish majors.”

In addition to paper presentations and shared research information, the SUR Conference includes a 4 p.m. lecture, “Making Writing Real,” by Harriet Turner, the Harold E. Spencer Professor of Modern Languages and Literatures at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Turner’s lecture will focus on fiction writing and its persuasion of the liveliness and truth of what is only imagined. Her examples include “Portrait of a Lady” by Henry James; “La Regenta” by Leopoldo Alas and “The Secret Life of Bees” by Sue Monk Kidd.

For more information about the SUR Conference, visit A photo of Helmer is also available for download at

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