Student Scholars Day to showcase scholarship, research, creative projects

GVL Archive / Toni Lopez
Students participate browse the different presentations at Student Scholarship Day

GVL Archive / Toni Lopez Students participate browse the different presentations at Student Scholarship Day

Lauren Ringger

The time has come for Grand Valley State University students to present their scholarly work in the university’s largest annual celebration of student academic achievement.

GVSU students at will showcase their scholarship, research and creative projects Wednesday at Student Scholars Day.

“When students initially come to campus, they don’t always understand how to explore a particular question or problem,” said Susan Mendoza, director of Undergraduate Research and Integrative Learning. “Through general education and courses in the major, students begin to dive into scholarship and research. They learn how to ask a question and how each of the disciplines provides a framework for discovery.”

Mendoza said Student Scholars Day offers students a venue to share what they have learned, discovered and created and for many students can often times be a transformative experience.

“Student Scholars Day also provides an opportunity for students, faculty and staff to see the intellectual prowess of GVSU students,” Mendoza said. “These projects happen in and out of the classroom. Many of them are original work and have been presented regionally and nationally. It is a day for faculty and staff to be awed and inspired by our students’ work.”

Student Scholars Day began in 1996 and has annually provided a venue for students to share their work with the community. Last year, 499 students gave 299 student presentations including oral presentations, poster presentations, discussion panels and exhibits. The students represented more than 70 majors and graduate programs.

This year, poster and oral presentations will be shown from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in Kirkhof Center and the Henry Hall Atrium.

Two panel presentations will be shown. “Scholarship and Creative Practice as Continuing Education Students” will be presented at 1 p.m. in Area 51 of the Kirkhof Center. “U.S. Policy in the Middle East during the Ford Administration” will be shared at 4 p.m. in Room 1142 of Kirkhof Center.

Keynote speaker Nina Jablonski will present, “Why Skin Color Matters: A Look at the Evolution and Meaning of our Most Visible Trait,” at 6 p.m. in Room 2204 in Kirkhof Center. Hors d’oeuvres will precede the lecture at 5:30 p.m.

The U.S. Congress designated April 10-16 as Undergraduate Research Week in national recognition of the importance of student work; although it emphasizes undergraduates, the work of the graduate programs are recognized as well. Mendoza said student scholarship and research is critical to our communities, our professions and the mission of the university.

“Student Scholars Day is one day a year, where GVSU community members should take pause, take a moment and see a poster or attend a presentation,” Mendoza said. “This is why we are here: for learning and scholarship. Graduate schools and employers value this type of work. Student Scholars Day gives us an opportunity to showcase it.”

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