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ODU Shines Light on ‘Amazing’ Undergraduate Research Projects

The 2012 4th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium A project is discussed at the 4th Annual ODU Undergraduate Research Symposium, held last year.

Old Dominion University is known as one of the East Coast's premiere research institutions. But in addition to the studies conducted by ODU faculty and graduate students, many undergraduate students are also engaged in research.

The ODU Undergraduate Research Program will highlight the comprehensive projects being undertaken by undergraduate students at its fifth annual symposium on Saturday, Feb. 9, in the Learning Commons at Perry Library.

Carol Simpson, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, will provide opening remarks at 8:45 a.m. Presentations will begin with a 9 a.m. session that features Political Science, Geology and Psychology projects. Beginning at 10:15 a.m., and continuing into the afternoon, students will present research projects in History, Biology, Engineering, Medicine, Kinematics, Physics, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences and Art History. The event will conclude late in the afternoon with a reception and Visual Arts exhibit.

The symposium is free and open to all students, faculty, staff and the public.

For anyone who wants to get a taste of what to expect, a display of past poster presentations - some of which were presented by students at academic conferences outside ODU - has been set up at the Perry Library Art Gallery. It will be available for viewing all month.

Ivan Ash, director of ODU's Undergraduate Research Program and the event's organizer, said 104 undergraduate researchers are participating in this year's program.

The symposium "gives an idea of the diversity of research" so attendees "get a taste of what's going on and can talk with actual researchers," Ash said. "We're trying to show the amazing research and original artwork undergrads are doing here. These aren't high school science projects - it's real research that's being published in journals and presented at conferences."

Ash said he wants the symposium to serve as a conduit to introduce students (and faculty in some cases) to available research opportunities.

"It's one of the benefits of ODU - there is real research going on here," he said. "We want to involve undergraduates in that if they are interested."

For more information about the Undergraduate Research Program, go here.