July 14, 2021

Warrior Scholar Conference pivots virtually, celebrates undergraduate research experience

In keeping with annual tradition, the 2021 Warrior Scholar Conference brought together scholars, writers and artists from across the university to showcase excellence among undergraduate research. The event was hosted virtually May 5 through 7, and included 60 presentations from 83 student researchers, including oral presentations, papers, posters, creative projects, art installations and performances. Topics ranged from the science of a “runner’s high,” polymeric environments, and the role a caregiver plays in childhood obesity and nutrition, to extinction, crisis communications campaigns and Victorian-era women’s networking.

The Academy of Scholars provided 13 $250 awards for the best presentations. Awards were also provided by the University Library System and Dr. Thomas Kline. A list of winners is available below.

"Academy of Scholars members who served as judges were tremendously impressed with the quality of work presented in the conference. Several judges commented how much they enjoyed and valued discussions with the presenters,” said Professor Paul Karchin, who served as the Academy of Scholars coordinator for the Warrior Scholars Conference. “Undergraduate participation is a critical part of the scholarly mission of Wayne State University."

The virtual format was new for the conference, and engagement with the research remained high. A total of 50 comments and questions to presenters were delivered, and the conference site was visited 898 times by 119 individuals. A total of nearly 73 hours were spent by the participants at the conference, with 1,399 unique presentation views over three days.

“While a virtual conference wasn’t our first choice, we knew that this event needed to go on during the pandemic, because it provides a unique opportunity for students to present their hard work and foster a network of like-minded researchers,” said Matt Orr, UROP program coordinator. “The virtual format provided new ways for students to engage with each other and conference participants, and we hope to incorporate an interactive element in future conferences.”

The 2022 Warrior Scholars Conference will be March 25, 2022 in the Student Center Building. Information regarding when and how to apply will be added to the UROP website near the end of the fall semester. Students are encouraged to connect with faculty research mentors using UROPConnect.

Warriors Scholars 2021 Award Winners

Academy of Scholars Awards

  • Aaron Campbell, with faculty mentor Jane Fitzgibbon
  • Abigal Jaczkowski, with faculty mentor Benjamin Kidder
  • Doha Abdullah, with faculty mentor Robert Adkins
  • Era Cobani, with faculty mentor Zeng-Quan Yang
  • Hasan Iqbal, with faculty mentor Aaron Rury
  • Hira Ali, with faculty mentor Elizabeth Towner
  • Jacob Kostecke, with faculty mentor Weilong Hao
  • Kamya Clark, with faculty mentor Courtney Spivak
  • Lillith Solomon, with faculty mentor Brad Roth
  • Melissa Torres, with faculty mentor Howard Matthew
  • Sean Camburn, Hailey Cloutier and Emily Erdt, with faculty mentor Jane Fitzgibbon
  • Shelley Paulisin, with faculty mentors Hilary Marusak and Hannah Schacter
  • Shreya Desai, with faculty mentor Hilary Marusak

University Library System Awards

Special Collections and Archives Award

  • Rebecca Phoenix, with faculty mentor Eric Ash

Information Literacy Award for Undergraduate Research

  • Shreya Desai, with faculty mentor Hilary Marusak

Dr. Thomas Kline Awards

  • Rebecca Phoenix, with faculty mentor Eric Ash
  • Hijab Ahmed, with faculty mentor Simone Chess

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