URSA research showcase rescheduled due to weather

Josh Hartman / Sun Star

Doctor Carrie Green from the UAF School of Education was unable to present her research as part of the URSA research showcase on Wednesday, Sept. 30, due to extreme weather conditions.  Her showcase, entitled “Engaging Young Children as Active Researchers: Our Experience in the Forest,” was rescheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 18.

The event will occur in the Schaible Auditorium. It will be free and open to the public.

Green’s research pertains to the formative interactions of children and their environment, and she makes use of undergraduate students for conducting research.

The next UAF research showcase will be on Wednesday, Oct. 28, presented by Doctor Michael Harris on the “Biology of Vampires.” This showcase will occur from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in Schaible Auditorium.

These research showcases are sponsored by the Undergraduate Research and Scholarly Activity (URSA), which is a resource for undergraduate students to get involved in research or otherwise scholarly projects.

Currently three people make up the whole of URSA: Barbara Taylor and Trent Sutton, who are the co-directors, and Kate Pendleton who is the coordinator.

Individuals who want to be involved in research or other projects can go to the URSA office at 301 Bunnell and talk to Taylor, Sutton or Pendleton. Here they work toward discovering what piques students’ interest and what they should do to explore those interests.

Once they identify what interests the student they can show that student what to do next in order to start a research project.

“We refer students to these people in those departments and we help students understand that there is funding available for these projects,” Taylor said.

Every year about 160 students accrue some kind of benefit from URSA, according to Taylor. Additionally, somewhere around $325,000 is given out to undergraduate students, faculty, graduate students or post docs who have a plan to create opportunities to develop, conduct) and present undergraduate research.

Every year UAF receives income to conduct research and some of this income goes to funding URSA to support the next generation of researchers.

Some of the research being conducted is on unmanned aerial vehicles, obsessive compulsive disorder and thawing permafrost, according to Taylor.

URSA has been an official resource for students since July 1, 2011.

“We’re really welcoming, please let us help you find your interest,” Taylor said.

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