The Confluence

Volume 3, Issue 1 (2023)

Welcome to the Confluence

Lindenwood University has a strong connection to the State of Missouri while encouraging students to expand their thinking and actions to make them good citizens of our global community. Our Fall 23 issue of the Confluence, highlights these connections-our student's love for the State they call home, the planet they call home, and the people they are ultimately neighbors with. This issue features art, creative writing, and individual student research and student/fauclty joint research. They highlight some of the best work done by our students and showcase the powerful work students can do when they work directly with faculty on research. The Confluence gives students a best-in-class educational experience by providing the real experience of publishing in a journal that reaches readers on every continent. Through them, Lindenwood University advances global conversations and cutting edge research in every facet of human life.


Creative Essay


Dr. Nichole Torbitzky, Lindenwood University

Editorial Review Board

Professor Andrew Millians, College of Arts and Humanities

Dr. Sara Bagley, College of Science Technology and Health

Dr. Gaurango Banerjee, Plaster College of Business and Entrepreneurship

Dr. Melissa Elmes, College of Arts and Humanities

Dr. Tonya Thompson, College of Education and Human Services

Dr. Kate Tessmer, College of Science, Technology and Health

Dr. Nicholas Wintz, College of Science Technology and Health

Dr. Megan Woltz, College of Science Technology and Health

Cover Art

Black Joy 1

About the Author

Randi Donnell is a student at Lindenwood University. She will be graduating with her bachelor’s degree in Art and Design with K-12 Education Certification in December 2023. She has always loved creating and putting visuals to imaginative ideas and using art to create conversation among viewers. She focuses mostly on mediums like paint, charcoal or chalk pastels but gains joy out of experimenting with materials, methods and ideas. She never wants to put herself in a box out of fear or lack of experience. Along those lines, only recently has she been comfortable calling herself an artist without feeling like an imposter. She started my own art business called Delicate Waffle Art Studio last year to finally officially start doing what she loves as a career and creating work for others through commissions. Additionally, she has developed her passion and practice of education mostly through coursework at Lindenwood but also at her places of employment. She is excited to graduate and be able to work toward her goals while pursuing her passions as an explorative artist and an art educator.

About the Art

The work “Black Joy 1” is the beginning of a theme I want to continue where black joy is depicted as something normal and sweet. A lot of times in media, society focuses on the sad and troubled history and events that make up black American culture. I want to be able to draw attention to the good parts, the happy parts, the parts free from violence and hatred. This piece is one of a series I am working on with black children doing normal activities and having fun. In this painting, I imagined kids, friends or siblings, that were playing outside until the days end, happily making their way back home together to eat dinner with their family and have a peaceful night sleep. This is a part of my delicate and sweet side to my works. I want the children to exist in a place where they are free to just be innocent kids and also show audiences a normal side of black American life. The children are faceless as I do not want realistic features to be the focus, they are figures, symbols rather for the idea of black youth. I also am not the most experienced in drawing people!