Undergraduate Showcase Relies on Faculty Support

Undergraduate Marissa Wechsler working on stem cell research to re-grow bone for trauma victims.

The UTSA Office of Undergraduate Research will host its inaugural Undergraduate Research & Creative Inquiry Showcase on Thursday, April 24 in the University Center on the Main Campus. The showcase is designed to increase visibility of undergraduate scholarly endeavors across all areas of academic inquiry.

The event is currently open for registration, and its success hinges on faculty involvement. The Office of Undergraduate Research would like to request that UTSA faculty across all disciplines encourage their students to participate. These experiences enhance learning by complementing classroom-based instruction, provide real-life exposure to students’ fields of interest, and develop critical thinking, creativity, and problem solving skills.

“Faculty members can and should act as mentors to students interested in showcasing their research,” said Donovan Fogt, director of undergraduate research. “They often unknowingly play a pivotal role in the life trajectory of their student charges. As students choose to explore the realm of independent academic inquiry and scholarship, we need to optimize their transformative learning experience.”

“The manner in which undergraduates can be engaged and incorporated into the research process depends on the discipline, the project, and the needs of the faculty member,” Fogt went on to say.  “With support, training, and guidance, students can contribute in a variety of ways, including conducting library research and literature reviews, assisting with data collection, data entry, and analysis, recruiting, scheduling, and running study participants, conducting and transcribing interviews, and acting as research and laboratory assistants.”

Additionally, during the showcase two UTSA faculty, Ann Eisenberg (Professor, Department of Psychology and Associate Dean, Honors College) and Carlos Garcia (Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry) will be honored for their commitment to excellence in undergraduate research. These faculty will receive the first annual Faculty Service to Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship Award at the April 24th event.

To register and present at the showcase, students must either be a current UTSA undergraduate student with a completed project or work in progress, or a recent UTSA graduate who completed research/project as an undergraduate in summer 2013 or fall 2013. Students need to register by 5 p.m. on April 11, 2014 at research.utsa.edu/UGresearch/showcase.php. For more information about the showcase contact Donovan.Fogt@utsa.edu.

February 11, 2014

by Office of Undergraduate Research