How can students get involved in non-STEM academic work, such as writing, producing original research, attending conferences, etc.? What extracurricular opportunities are available on and off-campus? Dr. Kotlarczyk The cool thing about being a writer is all you have to do to be a writer is write. Many great writers who we read today had other jobs. Arthur Conan Doyle, who created Sherlock Holmes, was a doctor. So was the poet William Carlos Williams. Wallace Stevens was a lawyer. Kafka worked in insurance. These days, a lot of esteemed and award-winning writers teach, especially in college - Jesmyn Ward, George Saunders, Viet Thanh Nguyen, to name a few. I don't know much about extracurriculars, but if you want to get into non-STEM academic work, start reading, and read everything you can get your hands on. And start writing. Mr. Kearney In political science, there are a number of ways to get involved. Right now, I offer an SIR in Econometric analysis for social science. It is my great hope that the administration will continue to allow me to offer this course in the future. It is an opportunity for students to learn about multiple components of social science: research design, hypothesis testing, statistical computing, data collection. I cannot stress enough how much this puts our students at an advantage at the next level of their educational careers. I have taught a similar course to college juniors and seniors and they struggled. Our students who take this SIR and are serious about doing social science research are very well positioned for success. Conference space remains at a premium, given the multitude of social science graduate students and researchers out there, but there is no doubt in my mind that our students have the ability to present at local and regional events. Dr. Cross Students who would like to conduct extracurricular work should reach out to one of the history and social science teachers. Talk to them about an independent study or SIR project. Each of us teachers are also well connected in our respective fields of expertise and can give specific advice. Check out professional associations, too, since many offer resources to prospective students in their fields. Finally, write up your research and contribute to Zeitgeist, so all at IMSA can benefit from the ideas circulating in our community. PAGE 25