Six Students Present History Research at Conference, One Wins Prize

Six Ursinus students presented their independent research in history at the Phi Alpha Theta Pennsylvania East regional conference at Bloomsburg University in Bloomsburg, Pa., on April 13, 2013. They were accompanied by the Ursinus Phi Alpha Theta advisor, Assistant Professor of History Susanna Throop, who mentored four of the six papers.

Prof. Throop and students at the Phi Alpha Theta PA East regional conference.

Phi Alpha Theta is the American honor society for undergraduate and graduate students and professors of history. The society has more than 350,000 members, with about 9,500 new members joining each year through 860 local chapters.

The PA East regional conference is large; there are more than 20 schools in the region and there were more than 85 student papers presented, each representing the best work of their respective institutions.

Despite such a deep pool of student papers, the work of Katherine Pierpont, a senior with a double major in History and English, earned a Best Paper prize for “The Public Body: Sumptuary Legislation, Clothing, and Prostitution.”

Katherine Pierpont

Pierpont receives the Best Paper prize.


“All of the Ursinus presentations were of a very high quality, especially distinguished by attention to original thesis development, use of primary sources, and acknowledgment of counterarguments,” says Throop.

Other presenters included:

  • Chloe Campbell 2013: “Female Mystics and their God in the Late Middle Ages: Transcendent Sex”
  • Brian Clancy 2014: “Rising Above It: The Female Aristocracy of Medieval Europe”
  • Rebecca Hollenbach 2013: “Mystical Suffering: Violence, Women, and Religion in the Middle Ages”
  • Nicholas Roberts 2013: “Tragedy of the Commons: The Roman Agrarian Crisis of the Second Century B.C.E.”
  • Leah Shaw 2013: “Racialized Development, De Facto Segregation, and Milliken v. Bradley: What the Court Ignored”