Undergraduate Research Symposium

 

By Anali Frias

More than 50 students presented research on 33 topics at the annual Trevecca Undergraduate Research Symposium.

For the 23rd year in a row Trevecca students teamed up with a faculty member to do and present research.

“What makes this year’s symposium special is that it’s actually being considered as part of our QEP (Quality Enhancement Program),” said Lena Welch, dean of the school of arts and sciences.

The QEP is a program that is required by the university’s accrediting body.

Students this year looked at topics ranging from multitasking to why students watch Netflix to lumbar disc herniations.

The research included experiments and surveys.

“It can also be creative scholarship so it can be analyzing or creating musical work or historical research which is more associated with the humanities,” said Welch.

Students were assigned groups of four or five and there was a faculty judge who listened and identified what he/she thought to be the strongest or best presentation in each group.

The presentations were 15 minutes long.

A panel of faculty and administrators will choose the best projects out of each group and awards will be presented at the annual Awards Chapel next week.

Welch was pleased with attendance this year.

“Some faculty members give extra credit for the attendance and then students lots of the times just want to go to hear what their friends are doing and what their friends are talking about and what they’ve been studying,” said Welch.

Freshman, Damaris Villalva, attended the event for extra credit.

“I really thought it was going to be boring, but it was actually interesting,” said Villalva.

Biology majors, Rachel Sorensen and Laura Wade presented their research on UV Ray Effects on Serratia Marcesens.

“Our research took 5 hours and 45 minutes and this was for our Physic Based Research class,” said Sorensen.

More students from other departments presented this year.

“Psychology has always done a lot of research. Science and math has always done a lot of research. What is neat, is that the last couple of years and this year particularly, we’ve seen students from a wide range of other departments presenting research and that’s really exciting,” said Welch.

Anyone can conduct a research and present at the Research Symposium. There are a few requirements.

“All the student would need to do is to talk with an academic sponsor, usually a faculty member, about their interest in research.”

The student can research outside of their field of study.

“Undergraduate Research looks great on a resume, it’s a way to distinguish and differentiate yourself from all the other thousands of students who graduate. So the projects I think come out of just students who want to do something extra to distinguish themselves,” said Welch.

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