Black History Month 2021

For Black History Month, SPEAC students compiled short biographies of Black scholars working today in the fields of Classics and Archaeology and sent them weekly to our mailing list. There are so many amazing Black scholars in our fields, and here are just a few that we wanted to highlight! 

Classics faculty members also presented short biographies of historical Black Classicists before the weekly Classics Colloquium (post to come!).

Continue reading Black History Month 2021

Notes from Fall 2020 Semester Check-In with Faculty

One of SPEAC’s founding principles is that collaboration between students and faculty is invaluable for effecting the changes we’re seeking. We recently held a meeting to update faculty on our projects from this semester, discuss our plans for next semester, and to provide a space for brainstorming potential interdepartmental projects that SPEAC could help implement. SPEAC was represented by a student from each of our four committees: Conference, Curriculum, Colloquium, and Website/Outreach. All interested faculty were invited to attend, from both Classics and CNEA, since we are an interdepartmental group.


SPEAC Fall 2020 Faculty Check-In Meeting 12/15/2020

Topics discussed:

  • A major goal of SPEAC is collaborating with faculty, grad students, and undergrads to make positive change in our classics and archaeology departments
    • This is the first of our semesterly meetings with faculty and students from both departments
  • We’re aiming for our conference to create a space for students to come together and talk about the future of the field
    • We have secured a $700 budget, which will be used to pay for the keynote speaker and logo
    • In future years we will ask for bigger budget to help pay for travel fees of conference participants.
    • Abstract submissions are open until January 1
    • We will take names off the submissions and SPEAC members (except those who submitted) will vote on which to accept
  • SPEAC is partnering with the classics and archaeology departments to host anti-racism reading groups
    • THURSDAY, JANUARY 28, 2 PM for first session (other details TBD)
    • Inspired by the First Fridays on Anti-Racism organized by Penn’s Department of Classical Studies
  • Curriculum committee is a new committee that came from students at the town halls asking for greater diversity in course offerings
    • We will form a group with Prof. Conybeare to create Ancient North Africa courses–this will happen early next semester
    • Prof. Conybeare has some research funding for up to two research assistants!
  • Different pages of our website: resources, conference CFP, links to departments’ social justice pages, blog posts with resources/activities, events
    • We will have a whole separate conference website soon and we just created SPEAC Instagram and Twitter
  • Colloquium committee has written and implemented a speaker style guide and assembled a diverse list of speaker suggestions for this year
  • Recruitment committee redid the classics recruiting materials for academic fair
  • We also want to reach out to and learn from other groups in the Bi-Co that are working on similar goals
  • We need to talk about intro language classes and the violence of language teaching, c.f. recent conversations on Classics Twitter
  • Olivia is the FGLI mentor, a FGLI grad student who’s a resource for undergrad students.


As always please email us with any questions!