An Illinois College student wins a campus-wide competition with a piece supporting local businesses in the wake of COVID-19.
On Wednesday, the Illinois College Literary Societies competed in their Annual Fall Society Showcase. The Showcase is an event held every Fall semester in which the 7 societies, 4 male and 3 female, select one individual to give a piece from one of the 3 productions each society hosts every semester.
Sydney Geyston, of Sigma Phi Epsilon, was named the victor, which she says has always been a goal of hers: “Well, I was actually extremely shocked. I thought all of the producers [sic] last night did an amazing job, and as I was watching it, I knew the judges had a tough decision that they had to make. Once I learned all about the literary aspect of it, I actually remember telling my family one day I will go to Fall Society Showcase or Best of the Best and maybe, just maybe, I might be able to win. I don’t know. I never could have imagined that would have happened the Fall semester of my Sophomore year still being relatively new to the society and to the literary aspect of it, so it came as a shock and as a blessing.”
Geyston says her extemporaneous piece called “Investing Local” was inspired by supporting local businesses in wake of the Pandemic: “This year our theme for the Literary Production was Stay Local. Our Vice President, Leah Reither, chose this theme especially in the height of the COVID-19 virus. She found that it was beneficial for everyone to learn about helping out local businesses, so that they can stay afloat during these times, too. The one that I was in was Investing Local, so I gave an extemporary piece, and it was on investing local, but I didn’t want to just talk about the basic investing of giving back your money. I thought it was important to discuss how you can utilize your time and your talents as well.”
Sigma Phi Epsilon is one of the female societies at Illinois College and was founded in 1916 with the letters standing for Knowledge, Love, and Service. The Society also won the Spring showcase Best of the Best last semester.
Geyston was awarded $100 and a new trophy this year which was created to promote a spirit of competition with the event being over Zoom to promote social distancing due to COVID-19 this semester. Madison Love, of Chi Beta Literary Society was the runner-up with her piece entitled “The Most Worthy Love” about self-love and received $75.
All of the Literary Societies continued to show their commitment to literary excellence in the wake of the pandemic.