Phi Beta Delta to present lectures on Colombia, Italy


Northwestern State University’s chapter of Phi Beta Delta Honor Society for International Scholars will host two Language and Culture mini-lectures on Wednesday, Feb. 23 and Wednesday, March 16 at 5:30 p.m. in the David Morgan Auditorium (Room 107) of Russell Hall. The program on Feb. 23 will be “Sounds of Columbia.” The March 16 presentation is “Italy.”

The registration fee is $5 for NSU, LSMSA and BPCC@NSU students and $20 for all other participants. Proceeds will support scholarships for NSU students participating in international studies. The public is invited to attend. To register please visit Both events will be in-person and virtual via WebEx at the same time. On site registrations are welcomed. Registered participants will receive the meeting invitation after registration. Online access to the lecture recordings will be available for all registered participants.

Motel 6

“Sounds of Colombia” will offer insights into language and culture, especially the music and dance of Colombia. Northwestern State President Dr. Marcus Jones will be the special guest. Aura Hernandez-Canedo will be the guest lecturer for the event.
Canedo, an international graduate student from Cartagena, Colombia, is pursuing a degree in music with a concentration in performance and a music teacher certification in the School of Creative and Performing Arts at Northwestern State. She holds a Bachelor of Music in violin performance from NSU where she studied under Dr. Andrej Kurti. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering Technology from NSU. Canedo has participated in the Cartagena International Music Festival, served as principal second for the Natchitoches-Northwestern Symphony Orchestra, and performed with several orchestras around the region. She is the student representative on Phi Beta Delta board.

Canedo will be joined by NSU music majors Dania Briceno, Ruth Garcia, and Santiago Uribe. Briceno and Garcia are from Tegucigalpa, Honduras and Uribe is from Cartagena, Colombia. Briceno, a violinist, is the current concertmaster for the Natchitoches-Northwestern Symphony Orchestra and a McCutcheon honor winner in 2020. Garcia is a violinist and violist. She has performed with several professional orchestras around the region and Latin America. Uribe is the current principal cellist for the Natchitoches-Northwestern Symphony and a concerto-competition winner in 2020.

Also participating are Elias Castro of Cartagena, Colombia, who is double majoring in music with a concentration in music business and business administration at NSU. He has recently toured around the U.S. as a percussionist with the “Advance the Light” band. He is a McCutcheon honor winner in 2022.

Maria Paula Mancera and Diana Garcia are from Cartagena, Colombia, and are dance majors at NSU. Mancera is also pursuing business administration and Garcia is pursuing a fine and graphic arts degree from NSU.
On March 16th, Elisa Silicato and Dr. Richard Bach Jensen will be the guest lecturers for the second of the mini-lectures entitled, “Italy.”
Silicato is from Umbria, Italy, and an exchange student at NSU. She is studying translation in her home university and came to Louisiana to study abroad. Her biggest interest is nature, literature, and art. She is very proud of the Italian culture and loves her home country.

Jensen is professor emeritus of modern European history at the Louisiana Scholars’ College at Northwestern. He previously taught at Northwestern University in Evanston, Southern Illinois University, and Skidmore College. He has published two books: “Liberty and Order: The Theory and Practice of Italian Public Security Policy, 1848 to the Crisis of the 1890s” (New York: Garland Publishing, 1991) and “The Battle Against Anarchist Terrorism, 1878-1934: An International History” (Cambridge University Press, 2014). The latter is based on archival research across Europe, the United States, and Argentina. He has written more than 30 articles and book chapters. His most recent articles have explored not only the evolving history of 19th and early 20th century terrorism but also the evolving understanding and definition of sub-state terrorism.

The Phi Beta Delta Language and Culture Series supports funding for Northwestern State University students participating in international studies and expands all participants’ knowledge of different countries, languages, and cultures. Previous lectures in this series have introduced the cultures of China, India, Latin America, Spain, France and Japan. Organizers hope these short classes will expand attendees’ knowledge and understanding of world cultures as well as encourage interest in international study and travel.
Phi Beta Delta Honor Society for International Scholars has goals to increase the recognition, credibility, and importance of the international experience and create a catalyst for international academic-based programming on college campuses while providing support and recognition to those individuals on campuses involved in international education. The Northwestern State Chapter, Eta Mu, was established in 2010 and continues to sponsor campus-wide activities and scholarships on the NSU campus. The Chapter was awarded the 2020 Eileen Evans outstanding Chapter Award in May 2020 at the annual PBD conference.

For more information, please contact Dr. Weiwen Liao at or contact Becky Stephens, 201 Russell Hall, (318) 357-5162,