As you finish up those last few final papers or theses, you’ve probably heard about submitting those papers to NUCL, and that the submission deadline is quickly approaching. And that’s all well and good if you know what NUCL actually is.
But if you don’t, here is everything you need to know about NUCL and why you should really consider submitting – take it from someone who presented last year!
NUCL stands for Northwest Undergraduate Conference on Literature. NUCL is held at UP each spring and invites students from all over the greater Northwest (and, more recently, the entire U.S.) to present their academic papers to an audience in a conference setting. All submissions are read and chosen by a panel of UP’s esteemed English faculty and NUCL interns, and particularly compelling essays can win prizes during the conference. Not too thrilled with your academic essays? NUCL also has personal essay and poetry panels! There are special awards for these categories, too.
So why should you submit? I had the same question last January, when I was just a plucky freshman eager to be involved. I was encouraged by my English professor to submit my final essay to NUCL. I was surprised, but very flattered. I decided to go ahead and submit, even though I wasn’t sure if it would be accepted. But I was happily surprised that my paper was selected for a panel!
Then came the day of the conference. I am not someone who is particularly wild about public speaking, let alone reading something I wrote in front of a lot of strangers. Fortunately, everyone else at NUCL is in roughly the same boat. The environment is hugely welcoming and encouraging, and I quickly got over my stage fright during my presentation. The audience is engaged and respectful, and answering questions about my paper afterwards really increased a sense of legitimacy. Everyone takes the presenters’ work seriously, like we’re researchers and not just students.
So don’t wait until someone pokes you in the back – if you’ve got a paper, poem, or personal essay that you’re particularly proud of, why not take this incredible opportunity to share it? In addition to reading your work in front of an audience, you will get the opportunity to meet a ton of like-minded students from around the country who share your enthusiasm for the written word.
NUCL 2017 submissions are due by January 17th. The conference will be on March 25th.