Binghamton University will celebrate research, scholarship and creative activity with a series of events this week. Research Days, scheduled April 12-15, will feature a keynote speech, two campus-wide student poster sessions and events including an arts festival and workshops for faculty and students.
“This is our fifth Research Days,” says Janice McDonald, director of the Undergraduate Research Center and chair of the committee that coordinates the event. “It has been wonderful to watch how it’s grown. Students talk about it and look forward to it. Faculty are encouraging their students to participate in Research Days, too.”
Materials scientist Ainissa Ramirez, a science evangelist and former Yale faculty member, will deliver the keynote at 7 p.m. April 12 in the UU-Mandela Room. She’s the co-author of Newton’s Football: The Science Behind America’s Game (Random House) and author of Save Our Science: How to Inspire a New Generation of Scientists (TED Books). Her talk, titled “Making Friends With Failure,” will highlight the role of failure in the process of discovery across the disciplines.
“This topic is something everybody can identify with,” McDonald says. “Everyone, from students to faculty and staff members, has experienced a setback or a failure in their work. It can make you stronger and more resilient. Challenges are good.”
More than 130 undergraduate and graduate student posters from 20 disciplines will be presented during two sessions on April 15 in the UU-Mandela Room. The first runs from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; the second will be held from 2-3:30 p.m. All of the participants are engaged in original research with Binghamton University faculty mentors.
“The poster sessions are really becoming part of the academic fabric of our campus,” McDonald says. “We have more types of presentations, too, with many fields represented. We’re seeing the diversity of research and scholarly work across campus.”
Other highlights include two April 14 workshops for faculty, both in UUW-324. At 10 a.m., Maggie Villiger, an editor with The Conversation U.S., a news organization that publishes news analysis written by scholars, will meet with faculty to talk about ways to bring their research to a wider audience. At 2 p.m., the Office of Sponsored Programs will lead a workshop on using InfoEd’s SPIN, a new tool for finding funding opportunities to support research.
The second Art Awakening Festival will also take place April 14. The event, which celebrates creative expression in all forms, will be held from noon-4 p.m. in the UU-Mandela Room.