HPN Seeking New Leadership

The HPN Academy

We are looking for an enthusiastic EMA member to take over the management of the Humanities Professional Network. It’s a volunteer opportunity with loads of potential. Interested? Send a CV and motivation letter to

The shape of the Erasmus Mundus Association is changing as it goes legal and finds its path under Erasmus+. The Humanities Professional Network, after a long break, is also trying to find a way forward under these conditions.

Starting from scratch back in 2011, we had an amazing few years of development –two well-received international conferences, 11 editions of the HPN Review, an active social media presence (Twitter and Facebook), and a comprehensive website. The team of volunteers responsible for making this happen should be rewarded in this life and the next…

It was a shock to the system when our third scheduled conference was cancelled due to a melee of financial and logistical circumstances…

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ICEF Writing Competition 2013-2014

In the midst of my first year as a freelancer and adjunct ‘seminarist’ at the Higher School of Economics, International College of Economics and Finance (ICEF), I decided I needed some extra work.

I studied creative writing and English literature at university and always loved writing.  However, I remember having little acted upon the desire to submit material to writing competitions. With that in mind, I decided to organise an opportunity for my first year students at ICEF.

Aided by some financial support from the “ICEF Teaching and Learning Development Fund”, this is what I came up with. Pretty basic, but it did the trick:

ICEF Writing Comp poster

ICEF writing competition poster, 2014


We had a grand total of 11 entries, but much more interest.  Fighting for limelight with mid-March deadlines before exams was probably not the best idea and we could have promoted it better, but such is life.

We’ll develop the idea more next year. Hopefully, we can widen participation in ICEF, but also across other University of London affiliate centres.

Big thanks to Helen Mary Owen for the help assessing the submissions.  Nataliya Kolyadina was a great help in the final assessment, but also in the organisational aspects – providing valuable counsel to a newbie to the Russian university system.  And, of course, a big thanks to Oleg Zamkov, deputy director of ICEF, for his words of encouragement and receiving the winners.

You can read the winning submissions here in PDF:

Nataliya Mikhialova – 1st place

Maria Statirova – 2nd place

Oleg Sobchenko – 3rd place

Here is an interview with Nataliya (in Russian) on the ICEF website.



Projects, Writing

Daily Challenge

I started this blog with consistent and mildly vivid intentions, but have seen it dwindle again. In an attempt to reinvigorate the ‘blogyness’ in my life, I’ve set myself the challenge (lord knows I love one) to publish something everyday for a month. Call it an inverse Lent – I don’t give anything up, I do stuff.  Or, I give up being lazy. Ha!

Doesn’t have to be Shakespeare or Ansel Adams, but just something… harkening back to the blog title and Mr. Frost.

Welp. Here you are. #1. Done.

Until April 14th. Hold me to it.


The HPN Academy

This has been a project of mine for about three years now.  I finally got a decent website put up for the upcoming third annual conference at the University of Groningen, April 4-5, 2014.

Check the website for more info.

“[…] it is a responsibility of the humanities to try to help better the conduct of human beings in their lives and manifold professional activities.”

– J. Irwin Miller

hpn aca


Movember 2013

Let it Mo!

Yes, I’ll take part in Movember again this year.  Our team, EMAstache, raised nearly $1,500 last year for global men’s health issues.

This year, we’ll try to break the $2,000 mark and continue to raise awareness for these often under-discussed manly issues like prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and the latest addition to the team, mental health.

Your support, donations, and words of encouragement are very appreciated.

Follow the progress here at my Mo Space.

Al Mo

And check out the team efforts here, EMAstache:


Or, if you want even more, there’s a Facebook page to like!!