By Callie Shehan
On Friday, April 1st King University hosted the 28th annual Blue Ridge Undergraduate Research Conference. Originally called the Southeastern Undergraduate Research Conference, this conference attracts widespread regional interest every year. It provides an opportunity for students to present their research in an exciting setting. Undergraduate students from institutions throughout the Southern Appalachian region are chosen to present their research projects in a professional setting surrounded by other researchers and faculty. This year’s conference was a one-day event, with sessions that started mid-morning. There was also a poster session and a reception for all participants and faculty.
The day started with registration in the Student Center Complex that was followed by the plenary session given by the keynote speaker Dr. Michael Oliver titled Define and Refine Your Passion: It’s OK Not to Know. While undergoing a three-year postdoc in Cognitive Neurophysiology, he sought to take his knowledge and education to assist in a clinical population by investigating the differences between normal neurocognitive aging and neurodegenerative disease such as Alzheimer’s disease. During this time, he remained passionate about teaching, which prompted him to become an Adjunct Professor in Psychology at King’s satellite campus in Knoxville.
After the plenary session, another series of sessions were underway where students majoring in science and psychology presented their research to their peers. Over fifty students presented their findings ranging from procrastination to anxiety. The sessions gave participating undergraduate students an opportunity to give talks associated with their individual research projects at the paper sessions. Thirty students from King participated in this conference, and were able to gain valuable experience from the research and presentations to contribute to their resumes. Many faculty were involved in the planning of the conference including Dr. Vaughan, Dr. Macione, Professor Traynor, Keri-Lynn Paulson, Emily Krug, and Dr. DeFord. Additionally, a number of faculty helped to moderate the paper sessions such as Dr. H. Ong, Dr. L Ong, Dr. Vaughan, Dr. Love, Dr. Mongold.
Find more information on the Blue Ridge Undergraduate Research Conference at ttps://www.king.edu/events/blue-ridge-undergraduate-research-conference/