UT Geographers had a major presence at the recent annual meeting of the Southeastern Division of the Association of American Geographers (SEDAAG) in Asheville, North Carolina. The meeting, held Nov. 18-20, attracted almost 500 participants from across and outside of the southeastern United States. SEDAAG is one the largest and most active of the Regional Divisions of the AAG.
In total, 8 faculty members and 12 students from UT Geography participated in the meeting. Two of our graduate students (Melanie Barron and Kassie Hauser) competed in the student honors paper competition and two undergraduate students (Erik Schmidt and Kaitlin Malick) competed in the student poster competition. All of our students delivered superb papers and posters and courageously (although unsuccessfully) battled for the World Geography Bowl Trophy.
Also of note was a special panel session at the Asheville meeting organized in memory of former UT Department Head and Professor Sid Jumper. Dr. Carol Harden organized the session and Drs. Sally Horn and Bruce Ralston participated in this celebration of Dr. Jumper’s distinguished career. Special appreciation goes to Dr. Ron Kalafsky, who served as the Program Chair for this year's SEDAAG meeting. With the conclusion of the Asheville meeting, Drs. Josh Inwood and Micheline van Riemsdijk completed their two year terms as SEDAAG Secretary and State Representative (for TN) respectively.
The Department of Geography also co-sponsored a student coffee hour at the SEDAAG meeting, allowing us to speak with a number of excellent students interested in being a Volunteer. One thing that clearly distinguishes UT Geography is the ability and willingness of our students and faculty to engage the Academy on multiple scales—from the regional to the national to the international.
Next year’s SEDAAG meeting will be in Roanoke, Virginia and will be hosted by Virginia Tech University. We hope to see you there.
--Derek H. Alderman, Department Head.