REEESNe 2023 Student Conference at UPenn

Event time: 
Friday, April 14, 2023 - 12:00pm to Saturday, April 15, 2023 - 8:00pm
The University of Pennsylvania See map
3160 Chestnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Event Type: 
Student Conference
Event description: 

REEESNe held its second annual Student Conference, convened for the first time in person, in conjunction with the 20th Annual Slavic Bazaar of the University of Pennsylvania. This two-day conference featured panels of students’ scholarly papers as well as presentations on their experiences with study abroad, interships, etc.; professionalization and alumni career panels; a keynote lecture; collections visits; and more.

Many thanks to the faculty and staff of the University of Pennsylvania’s Russian & East European Studies Department, the University of Pennsylvania University Research Foundation, the School of Arts and Sciences, and Van Pelt Library for their partnership on this event.



Friday, April 14th


10:45 and 11:15 | Presentations by Kirsten Painter and John Pollack of the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts focused on: Special Collections holdings pertaining to Soviet Ukrainian and Russian literature and education, including rare Soviet illustrated children’s books from the 1920s; and the history and current practice of collecting materials from Eastern Europe and Eurasia.


12:00-12:45 | Lunch in the Goldstein Lobby Space 


12:45-1:15  | Welcome and Opening Remarks in the Pavilion


Kristen R. Ghodsee, Professor and Chair of Russian and East European Studies, University of Pennsylvania

Asia Neupane, Program Director, Councils on Latin American & Iberian Studies and European Studies at the MacMillan Center, Yale University 

Ian MacMillen, Program Manager, REEESNe, Yale University

Nicole Gonik, student Working Group member, Hunter College: “Studying Russia as a Ukrainian-American: My Experience with the REEESNe Working Group”


1:25-3:00  | Friday Sessions


3:15-4:55 A special tour in the Penn Museum by REEESNe institution alums Lauren Ristvet (Associate Professor of Anthropology) and Sarah Linn (Associate Director of Academic Engagement) of the Museum’s “Cold War Spy Planes” exhibit and of the Russian ethnographic and ancient (Scythian Maikop) collections.


5:15 | Dinner at the Biopond


Saturday, April 15th


8:30-9:00 | Breakfast 


9:00-10:00  | Alumni Panel - Career Conversations: Graduates of REEESNe institutions speak about their REEES-related educational and professional paths

- Elizaveta Mankovskaya, PhD, Princeton University; Associate Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations, Saint Joseph’s University

- Spencer Willig, BA, University of Pennsylvania; Trial Attorney, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

- Aaron Schwartzbaum, BA, Haverford College; Columnist and Podcast Host, Foreign Policy Research Institute


10:30-11:45  | Saturday Session 1


11:45-12:30 | Lunch 


12:30-1:45 | Saturday Session 2


2:00-3:15 | Saturday Session 3


3:30-4:45 | Keynote Address - “Ethics and Biopolitics in Tolstoy,” by Justin Weir, Curt Hugo Reisinger Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Professor of Comparative Literature, Affiliate of the Department of Art, Film, and Visual Studies, Harvard University


4:45-5:30 | Dinner