This story's lede hinges on the notion that it's surprising that an academic conference would center on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which it's not at all:
What is surprising is that they're having an academic conference in Arkansas. In a town called "Arkadelphia." About which Wikipedia says "The city's name Arkadelphia was likely formed by combining Ark- from the state's name Arkansas and adelphia as in Philadelphia." Which makes me wonder if those were the same visionaries who gave us Texarkana.
Seriously, good luck with that book-learnin', guys.