Grade Inflation to be Topic of Spring 2009 Speakers Showcase


CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Jan. 12, 2008 — Grade inflationᾰits origins, the harms it produces, and measures students can take to offset the harms will be the topic at the Department of Communication Studies’ Speakers Showcase at noon Jan. 28 in the University Center Ballroom at Southeast Missouri State University.

The featured speaker will be Angela Spinzig, a Southeast freshman English education major from St. Peters, Mo. Spinzig, who is minoring in communication studies, is a 2008 graduate of Fort Zumwalt South High School. Spinzig, the daughter of Brian and Victoria Spinzig, was selected from a pool of more than 450 students as this semester’s presenter.

The Speakers Showcase is for students newly enrolled in SC105 “Fundamentals of Oral Communication.” Students in SC105 study the oldest academic discipline known to mankind – public speaking.

The Speakers Showcase, held every semester since spring 2002, is now in its seventh year. The speech, and the discussion that follows, provides a good model for newly-enrolled students to use.

Dr. Glen Williams, professor of communication studies who oversees the event, says Spinzig’s speech is “one of the best” he has seen, noting that the speaker “addresses an important topicᾰciting very credible sources as she makes the case for the existence of grade inflation, how it threatens the integrity of the college degree, and what students can do to offset the damages done by grade inflation.”

Karen Kight, Spinzig’s instructor last semester who recommended the speech for consideration, noted how the speech provides “a twist of the unexpected” as it “challenges us to consider what students and instructors expect from higher education.”

The Speakers Showcase is open to the public for anyone interested in public speaking.  The student organization, Commrades, sponsors the event, along with the Department of Communication Studies and numerous businesses in Cape Girardeau, such as Cape West 14 Cinema, Buffalo Wild Wings, Horizon Screen Printing, Bella Hair Salon, The Book Rack and Annie Laurie’s Antiques.