Undergraduate research is an integral part of the liberal education at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, and the annual Celebration of Excellence in Research and Creative Activity (CERCA) is a showcase for students to present their work.
This year’s CERCA, May 1-5, marks the 25th year of celebrating student research at UW-Eau Claire. The weeklong event kicks off with a math retreat, “Quick Pitch” presentations and an art exhibit on Monday, and culminates with the Provost’s Honors Symposium on Friday afternoon. Hundreds of students will present their research during the course of the week.
Each year, CERCA provides students the opportunity to do research in their field and to present their projects to the academic community and the public. In 2016, 535 students presented projects. Elayne Hansen, a communication sciences and disorders major, was one of those students.
“My research gave me the opportunity early in my undergraduate career to learn to administer standardized tests and provide intervention for children,” Hansen said.
Hansen said CERCA also helped develop her ability to summarize and share information. She took two years of research and condensed it into a five-minute presentation.
In 2016, CERCA participants received close to $1 million in grants in support of the faculty-mentored research and creative projects. The funds cover the costs for materials and student stipends.
Community members may stop at the university's Visitor Center, 127 Roosevelt Ave., for parking instructions. More event details are available on the CERCA website.