Campus Life

UWF symposium to showcase work of hundreds of student researchers

The University of West Florida Office of Undergraduate Research will present the annual Student Scholar Symposium and Faculty Research Showcase from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, April 21 at the Field House, Building 54 on the UWF Pensacola Campus. The event is open to faculty, staff, students and the public.

The symposium features the research and creative work in which UWF students and faculty members are engaged. Highlighted in the program are those students whose projects received support from the Office of Undergraduate Research, including many who were able to present their research at regional and national conferences this year.

“Through research, undergraduate students work one-on-one with faculty in an area that interests them,” said Dr. Allison Schwartz, director of the UWF Office of Undergraduate Research. “We have students who graduate with two or three years of research experience under their belt. This is one of the ways that UWF graduates really have a competitive advantage in the job market and getting into graduate schools.”

The event will include nearly 200 research exhibits representing the work of more than 400 UWF students and faculty authors. The work spans 28 departments across UWF’s five academic colleges.

Examples of presentation topics include:

Art: Marrying Classic Animation to Modern Digital Media Focusing on Major Breakthroughs in Animation.

Computer Science: TourBot: The Ultimate Robot Tour Guide of Building 4A.

Physics: Investigating Growth Patterns Due to Environmental Factors on the Surface of Bivalve Shells with Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy.

Nursing: Awareness and Knowledge of Human Trafficking Among Registered Nurses in Northwest Florida.

Social Work: Using Music Therapy to Integrate Developmentally Disabled Clients into the Same Social Settings.

Instructional, Workforce and Applied Technology: Discovery Spot: A Technology-Rich Playground that Provides an Innovative Space for Students to Experience Technology in Various STEM Disciplines.

In addition to the 400 students and faculty members whose work will be represented, there will be 50 judges from UWF faculty and the Pensacola business community. “Attending the symposium is a great way for our first- and second-year students to see what might be possible and get ideas for their own future research projects,” Schwartz said.