Students are encouraged to participate in this year's Undergraduate Conference on Research, Scholarship, and Performance.

CSI students from all disciplines are encouraged to participate in the Tenth Annual Undergraduate Conference on Research, Scholarship, and Performance (URC). The event will be held on Thursday, April 14 in the Center for the Arts from 1:30pm to 4:00pm.

Every year, the goal of the event is to celebrate the student-faculty collaborations that have become a hallmark of the College of Staten Island.

Discussing the importance and wide range of scholarship at the Conference, Dr. Ann Lubrano, Acting Associate Provost for Undergraduate Studies and Academic Programs, says, “The URC is an outstanding opportunity for CSI students to showcase the work they have been engaged in under the guidance of faculty mentors. The conference represents the breadth of experiences and disciplines at the College presented in a manner that prepares the students for professional participation. There are poster presentations of scientific research, dramatic presentations, musical and dance performances, conference-style paper presentations, and art and sculpture exhibits. The Conference is a wonderful occasion for personal and professional development for CSI students.

Dr. Eun Park, CSI Dean of Research and Graduate Studies, sums up the many benefits for participating students. “The URC provides a valuable educational experience for undergraduate students through participation in various forms of projects and research. The research projects feature the high-quality interaction and work of students with faculty mentors. Those students who are exposed to the URC with research projects are in a better position, and are prepared and equipped for graduate study and research work if they decide to pursue graduate studies and degrees. The experience will be greatly beneficial for them.”

Ben Silfen, a senior Psychology major will be one of the students taking part in the Conference this year. He will present the findings of research that he conducted for his Honor’s Thesis, with the guidance of Assistant Professor of Psychology Dr. Florette Cohen, which examines different stereotypes that exist among students who are majoring in the social sciences, natural sciences, the arts, and business.

“I feel that presenting at this Conference is important on a professional level because it allows researchers to teach other new things, things that can be applied from one researcher to another, things that can be applied to everyday life,” he explains. “I feel that it is important for researchers to be informed and understand what else is going on in the world around them. I also feel that it is important for me on a personal level to be allowed to present because for the past several years every Psychology major who has conducted an Honors Thesis has been invited to present at this conference. I feel that the URC is a symbolic initiation ceremony to researchers who have been able to finish their research projects after more than a year, sometimes two years, of hard work and dedication. All I know is that ever since the first research conference I was allowed to attend two years ago, I have been anticipating this moment ever since, and I am very honored and excited to be a part of such an important academic endeavor.”

Kristina Toropova, a senior Psychology major who will present the breast cancer research that she conducted under Assistant Professor of Biology Dr. Jimmie Fata, is also very enthusiastic about the URC. “I am looking forward to seeing how my poster will bring together almost a year full of research, as well as being able to look at what other undergraduate students of all majors will present. The scientific community at the CSI campus is thriving, and everyone should experience it.”

Students who wish to participate should submit their abstracts electronically via the Undergraduate Research Conference Website  no later than Friday, March 4, 2011.
In addition, special conference preparation sessions (PowerPoint skills, large poster production) will be available to student presenters on Thursday, March 24 and Thursday, April 7 from 1:30pm to 3:30pm. Both training sessions will be held in the Media Services Lab located in the Library (Building 1L), Room 201. Please contact  to reserve a seat.
Students or faculty mentors who wish to receive more information about the conference are encouraged to contact Jessica Stein, the event coordinator, at 718.982.2341.