A select group of undergrad students filled the Shepherd Union on March 28 to present their research to those who were interested. Students from many of Weber State’s colleges shared their newfound knowledge about topics they have been studying throughout their schooling.

The 12th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium & Celebration was put on by the Office of Undergraduate Research to celebrate the scholarly accomplishments of Weber State students. The event also highlighted the relationship between the students and their mentors

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Students present during the Undergraduate Research Symposium last year. Undergraduates were back in the Shepherd Union atrium presenting their research March 28. Photo credit: The Signpost archives

Weber State provides one of the best student-faculty ratios in Utah at 20-to-1. The Office of Undergraduate Research highlights this high level of contact between professor and student by presenting this event. Together, students and their mentors conduct research which “enhances the potential of our students,” according to the OUR.

There were many reasons that students took the time to present their research. Some presented because of their high interest in the topic and others to fulfill requirements for their respective college.

Jazmine Thompson, a student in the communication department, presented on “The use of the N-word.” She chose to work with Dr. Anne Bialowas, also of the communication department, on her research

“Anne really pushed me to make sure I reached my full potential with my project,” Thompson said. “She provided excellent guidance and connections to resources that I was very grateful for.”

This praise of mentors by their students was common. Many of the students made it clear that their mentor was a pivotal part of their success.

With the help of their mentors, the students reached a large audience with their research. The presenters were surprised with the high interest of students who were in the Shepherd Union by happenstance on Monday.

“I thought I would have an audience and engagement from other mentors. However, I spoke with a lot of college students who wanted to discuss and provide their opinion on the topic,” Thompson said.

The level of interest of their peers surprised some of the students who were presenting.

The mentors were also big focal points during the presentations. Students were quick to say that they “couldn’t have done it without” their mentor.

The student and faculty relationship at Weber State was brought to the forefront on Monday. Students saw what can be accomplished when the mind of a student and the mind of their mentor come together.

Weber State is able to form a rare bond between their professors and their students because of the small class sizes it offers.

A strong relationship between student and professor fosters a sense of pride from the instructor when the student does well.

“Anne was so proud of how well I was delivering my research,” Thompson said. “This is a great memory that I’ll have forever.”

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