Undergraduate Academic Affairs

May 12, 2014

Undergraduate research to take over Mary Gates Hall on May 16

Undergraduate Academic Affairs

Event Details

5/16/14 | 11:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m.

11:00 a.m. Event welcome from UW President Michael K. Young

Mary Gates Hall, select rooms in Johnson Hall and Odegaard Undergraduate Library

Plan your day with the Symposium’s online proceedings.

On Friday, May 16, more than 1,100 University of Washington undergraduates will participate in the 17th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium—an event that might well be the country’s largest “show and tell” for undergraduate research. The Symposium takes place from 11 a.m.–6 p.m. in Mary Gates Hall; select oral presentations will happen in Johnson Hall and visual arts and design presentations will be in Odegaard Undergraduate Library.

UW Undergraduates are getting involved in research in ever-increasing numbers—more than 7,000 students participated in research in 2011-12, contributing to the innovative and groundbreaking research of UW faculty and even stretching into the surrounding research community.

At the Symposium, students present the research, scholarly, and creative work they have accomplished alongside faculty and graduate mentors throughout the academic year. Through their poster and oral presentations, undergraduates also learn to explain and connect their work to a general audience.

Picture of sculpture by AJ Swanson

Sculpture by AJ Swanson, one of the students who will share their work in the Visual Arts & Design Showcase this year.

The diversity of undergraduate research on display is notable—students are investigating research questions from all disciplines and address issues that are timeless and timely. At this year’s Symposium alone, students will share their research on topics spanning the artistic expression of multiple cultures, targeting and inactivating latent Hepatitis B virus, the evolution of genetic pathways affecting petal and stamen development, racial and ethnic discourses within Seattle’s Ethiopian and Eritrean communities, the local food movement, and much more.

New this year is a Visual Arts and Design Showcase featuring 19 works from ten students in sculpture; experimental media; landscape architecture, the landscape of an imagined, urban city; photography, printmaking, and more. The showcase is the outcome of a collaboration between Odegaard Undergraduate Library and the Undergraduate Research Program.

The Symposium itself is a profound symbol of collaboration across and beyond the UW. More than 800 mentors supported the student presenters through their research, helping students develop subject area knowledge, transferable skills, and an entrepreneurial perspective that will prepare them well for future employment, education and citizenship. One hundred twenty-two students from other institutions will also present their research, including students from local community colleges and students from institutions across the country who will be on campus for the McNair and Early Identification Program conference.

President Michael K. Young and UAA Dean and Vice Provost Ed Taylor will address symposium participants and attendees in a brief welcome at 11:00 a.m. in the Mary Gates Hall Commons. The 2014 Undergraduate Research Mentor Awardees will also be recognized at this time for excellence in guiding undergraduates to become scholars and researchers. Nominated by students, this year’s awardees are:

  • Sam Chung, Associate Professor, Information Technology & Systems, UW Tacoma
  • Maria Elena Garcia, Associate Professor, Comparative History of Ideas
  • Merill B. Hille, Professor, Biology
  • Patricia A. Kramer, Associate Professor, Anthropology
  • Robert M. Winglee, Professor, Earth and Space Sciences
  • Tracy Larson, Graduate Student, Biology

The Symposium is organized by Undergraduate Academic Affairs’ Undergraduate Research Program, which facilitates research experiences for students in all academic disciplines. Symposium attendees are encouraged to search the online proceedings, locate the poster and oral presentation sessions that interest them, and create their own, personalized proceedings to navigate the Symposium.

Photo of 2013 Undergraduate Research Symposium poster session.

2013 Undergraduate Research Symposium poster session.David Ryder