AU celebrates student research during Scholars' Day

Thu, 2013-05-02 08:52 -- univcomm
Anderson University Scholars' Day 2013
May 2, 2013

More than 40 Anderson University undergraduate students presented research during the 4th annual AU Scholars' Day on April 30. The event featured poster presentations from a wide range of academic disciplines at AU.

"Excellence is one of our core values at Anderson University, and as faculty we get particularly excited when we see our students excel," said Dr. Chad Wallace, chair of the Department of Physical Sciences and Engineering. "Many of today's presenters went above and beyond, exceeding what was required of them in the classroom."

[Photo: Senior nursing major Abigail Richardson discusses her research during AU Scholars' Day on April 30. See more photos from Scholars' Day.]

Participants created abstracts of their research, which were compiled into a program booklet. See Scholars' Day Abstracts.

Senior communication arts major Collin Rudkin presented his research exploring two contemporary and opposing approaches to the interpretation of scripture: historical criticism and theological interpretation.

"It was by far the largest project I've done in my undergraduate work," he said. "I found it really valuable because I'm planning to do graduate studies and eventually post-graduate studies. This is kind of a first big project that will start preparing me for what it's like to work on a thesis and maybe eventually on a dissertation. It's getting me used to the research and the types of questions that are relevant to the field of religious studies today."

Junior psychology major Allison Nichols surveyed 230 college students for a study of codependency, depression, and parental alcoholism. Nichols said the research process was an important step toward future career opportunities or graduate study.

"Having experiences like these and presenting my research looks great on a résumé and it can help me further my education later on," she said. "The skills I can take with me and develop later and really grow into the field of research through this process."

Senior finance major Patrick Cunningham was part of the team that presented results from the Raven Investment Fund, an $800,000 student-managed portfolio that gives students hands-on experience in real-world investment.

"Essentially what we're doing with the fund is the same thing that stock brokers would do," he said. "It's a very unique experience that we wouldn't get otherwise."

Sophomore physics and mathematics major Tyler Williamson presented research on high energy radiation in millisecond pulsar systems. Williamson began his research as a freshman and will pursue further work this summer at the VERITAS array in Arizona.

"To be involved in [the research] as a freshman was very surreal for me, and it's really given me a better idea of what a career as a physicist would look like," he said.

Scholars' Day 2013 participants (listed by department) included:

Anderson University is a private Christian university of about 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.