Section Navigation



Student research activities highlighted April 19 at Appalachian

DO6_04research_t.jpgBOONE—Research and creative work of graduate and undergraduate students at Appalachian State University will be showcased April 19 during the “Celebration of Student Research and Creative Endeavors.”

The annual event, sponsored by Appalachian’s Office of Student Research, will be held from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. in Plemmons Student Union.

D06_04research16.jpg

Alan Utter, left, reviews Jessica Unick’s poster presentation during last year’s Celebration of Student Research and Creative Endeavors at Appalachian State University. Unick presented on the accuracy of a Tonita bioelectrical impedance analysis scale in determining body composition of high school aged males and females. The former graduate student is now enrolled in the doctoral program at the University of Pittsburgh. (Appalachian photo by University Photographer Mike Rominger)

The event marks the 10th anniversary of the event which began as Research Day. This year, more than 150 students will participate either as a lead presenter or co presenter.

Initially, Research Day focused primarily on the sciences. Now, creative writing, poetry, performing arts and music are represented. Poster presentations, slide presentations, creative performances and performing arts will be held throughout the day.

“In many cases, these students have been working one to two years on their projects,” said Alan Utter, director of the Office of Student Research. “It’s an opportunity for them to share their research with their peers and the community at large.”

Utter says there are many benefits for students who participate in research with faculty mentors, including the opportunity to interact with faculty outside the classroom, learn more in-depth research skills, and oftentimes make presentations at professional meetings.

“This really epitomizes engaged learning,” Utter said. “Getting students involved with how to create new knowledge-how to discover, instead of simply look at the existing knowledge-gets them actively involved in the discovery of new knowledge. That’s an important educational objective that we have on our campus, and that is continuing to grow.”

Among the presentations scheduled for April 19 are:

Educational Farms: Preparing the Next Generation of Growers

Promoting Healthy Caregiver Relationships: The “Powerful Tools for Caregivers” Workshop

The Economic Impacts of Climate Change on Beach Recreation in North Carolina

Appalachian Rural Homelessness: The Case of Watauga County

Bereavement Strategies and Clinical Implications

Quercetin and Blood Oxidative Stress During Ultra-Marathon Running

“The faculty mentors drive this process,” Utter said of the student research. “We have very good faculty who are willing to get students involved. It takes extra effort to teach students new research techniques and skills, and to mentor them. We are fortunate to have a large percentage of our faculty who are willing and want to do that.”

One of the rewards for faculty is seeing their students go to graduate school and earn doctoral degrees, Utter said.

The university’s first Research Day had 41 graduate students and 19 undergraduates who presented at the event. There were 14 faculty mentors involved. The program has grown over the year’s, drawing136 presenters in 2006, 88 who were undergraduates and 48 who were graduate students. A total of 79 faculty advisors/mentors and 21 departments were represented.

This year’s presentation represents 24 academic departments and features 70 undergraduate and 41 graduate lead presenters. A total of 91 faculty advisors or mentors assisted with the student research.

“We are getting to the point where more and more faculty members are involving students in the research process -not just the graduate students but undergraduates as well,” Utter said. “It really benefits the undergraduate educational experience.”

###

Photo Caption: Alan Utter, left, reviews Jessica Unick’s poster presentation during last year’s Celebration of Student Research and Creative Endeavors at Appalachian State University. Unick presented on the accuracy of a Tonita bioelectrical impedance analysis scale in determining body composition of high school aged males and females. The former graduate student is now enrolled in the doctoral program at the University of Pittsburgh. (Appalachian photo by University Photographer Mike Rominger)