March 24, 2010
Jeremy Craig, 404-413-1357
Five Georgia State undergraduates took top honors in demonstrating their academic and scholastic prowess during the 2010 Georgia State Undergraduate Research Conference March 24.
Students from the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education, the Robinson College of Business, the College of Health and Human Sciences and the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies presented at the conference.
Provost Risa Palm, who spoke to students at the conference, said the disciplines the undergraduates are involved in are evolving, and as the students work, they are at the frontier of knowledge.
"I really do believe that research universities are the best for undergraduate learning, and part of the reason for that is the opportunities that you have availed yourselves of," Palm said.
Research at the frontiers has been fundamental to the efforts of Eidelman, a senior, to get into medical school. Working in the lab of biology professor Vincent Rehder, she presented work on an enzyme involved in nitric oxide in the nervous system.
"It's taught me how much work goes into research, and how results don't come right away, but you just keep working on it, putting in some hard work," she said. "And when results do come, you're very happy."
Yujun George Zheng, assistant professor of chemistry, who won the faculty award at the conference, said the benefits of undergraduate research are numerous, including critical thinking, problem solving and communication skills.
"It will greatly help career development, and it's a great boost for students going to graduate schools," he said.
Even in the arts, research plays a part in scholarship. For Pidgeon, she investigated the impact of the mortgage crisis in Atlanta's Reynoldstown neighborhood for a work that reflects the "Wizard of Oz" mantra, "there's no place like home."
"I don't think people realize how much research artists are doing for them to make their work," she said. "We're not simply making pretty art."
For more about the Georgia State Undergraduate Research Conference, visit www.gsu.edu/gsurc.