Hampden-Sydney senior Travis Stackow is making a habit of speaking before a national audience. He has been selected to present his summer research at the Central Slavic Conference, an honor granted to a limited number of undergraduate students who demonstrate a high level of scholarly research. It will be the second time Travis has shared his research on the national stage; last spring, he presented at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research at the University of Central Oklahoma.
Inspired by his passion for Russian literature—one of his favorite books is War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy—Stackow decided to enroll in Russian 101 so that he could one day read Russian literature in its original language. His Russian professor, Dr. Viktoria Basham, Visiting Instructor of Modern Languages, encouraged him to explore more Russian authors, so Travis met with her weekly to discuss works by Nikolay Karamzin, Alexander Pushkin, and Tolstoy. She notes that Travis did all of the readings in his free time, receiving neither credit nor a grade. Rather, his hard work was driven by his interest, passion, and desire to grow as a student, writer, and individual.