March 30, 2005 :: Oklahoma Undergraduate Research Showcased to State Legislature
College students from across the state recently showcased their research projects at the State Capitol as part of Research Day. The annual event, inaugurated in 1996, was developed to showcase the outstanding undergraduate research being conducted at Oklahoma’s colleges and universities in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, the Oklahoma Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) and the National Science Foundation annually sponsor Research Day. Walker Companies of Oklahoma City served as co-sponsor for this year’s event.
Organizers invited Oklahoma colleges and universities to nominate outstanding research projects conducted by undergraduate students. Eighteen students, nominated by twelve institutions, received a $250 stipend from Oklahoma EPSCoR to prepare and present their scientific research posters at the State Capitol. The event is an effort to inform the Legislature and the general public about the high-quality research taking place in Oklahoma’s institutions of higher education.
Many students were visited by their districts’ state representatives. Additionally, students’ posters were competitively judged by an independent panel who selected the top four research projects to receive the following awards:
- First Place – Tracy Washington of Lawton (The University of Oklahoma, Norman) presented the winning poster, featuring research on limb regeneration. Washington received a $500 cash prize, plus a $4,000 summer research internship at the Oklahoma college or university of his choice. In addition, a $2,500 award will be given to the sponsoring college or university laboratory to offset expenses for supplies, travel and other related expenses associated with hosting an internship.
- Second Place – Brian McWilliams of Bartlesville (Oklahoma State University, Stillwater) presented a research poster on bio-threat diagnostics. McWilliams won a $500 cash prize.
- Third Place – Forrest Humphrey of Rocky (Southwestern Oklahoma State University, Weatherford) showcased his research on retinal modeling. Humphrey received a $250 cash prize.
- Fourth Place – Kendra Byrd of Carmen (University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond) presented a poster on population genetics. Byrd won a $100 cash prize.
For further information on Research Day 2005 activities, contact Shelley D. Wear, special programs coordinator in the Oklahoma EPSCoR office, at 405.225.9287 or firstname.lastname@example.org.