Work of 11 Blugolds to be displayed at 'Posters in the Rotunda'

| LeBrenda Street

Students and their faculty advisers from across the UW system will converge on the state capitol April 13 to showcase their undergraduate research for local leaders, legislators and UW alumni at the 13th annual Posters in the Rotunda event.

Eleven UW-Eau Claire students were selected by the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs to present posters at the event. Each school is allowed only six posters, so research projects are chosen from a variety of disciplines with topics that might be of interest to legislators.

“Legislators express interest in research that provides information they can use or that relates to their district. Examples include research looking at issues related to frac sand mining in the area, research on educational or health care interventions and research on Wisconsin history,” said Dr. Karen Havholm, assistant vice chancellor for research and sponsored programs.

UW-Eau Claire has been recognized for the second year in a row as a finalist for the Council on Undergraduate Research’s Campuswide Award for Undergraduate Research Accomplishment, a national award for institutions that excel in providing undergraduate research experiences for their students. In recent years, more than a third of all UW-Eau Claire students engage in an in-depth research experience during their college career, according to Havholm.

Several of the student researchers in this year's poster event received funding to go beyond the university-sponsored setting to present their findings at state and national conferences. Joseph Hunt, Lorena Garceau and Kjirstin Martell presented their research at the Wisconsin Economics Association Conference in Stevens Point. Rory Smuhl traveled to San Francisco to present at the American Association of Geographer’s meeting. And Carissa Baier presented her research on the use of SnapChat as a communication tool for persons with Aphasia at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention in Denver.

Posters in the Rotunda is just one of a myriad of venues UW-Eau Claire takes advantage of in order to provide research experiences for their students. The event also allows local leaders to learn about the amazing contributions UW-Eau Claire students are making to our state and society as a whole.

Students presenting this year are:   

  • Joseph Hunt, Woodbury, Minnesota; Lorena Garceau, Elburn; Kjirstin Martell, Chippewa Falls; and Josh Bodnar, Nashotah; with Dr. Eric Jamelske, economics and Dr. Sydney Chinchanachokchai, management and marketing: “Evidence from the USDA Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program in Washington State Elementary Schools and Implications for Wisconsin Policy.”
  • Madeline Tautges, Madison; and Bobbie Freagon, Jim Falls; with Dr. Kelly Biers, languages: "Walloon in Northeastern Wisconsin."
  • Adam Wiest, Green Bay; and Samantha Bartnik, Cedarburg; with Dr. J. Brian Mahoney, geology: "Establishing an Environmental Baseline for Surface and Groundwater Chemistry in Western Wisconsin.”
  • Elizabeth Stubbs, Eau Claire, with Dr. Elizabeth Glogowski, materials science: “Thermoresponsive Property Investigation of Smart Diblock Copolymers."
  • Rory Smuhl, Eau Claire, with Dr. Karen Mumford, Watershed Institute: “Are Energy Use Intensity and LEED Certification Connected?"
  • Carissa Baier, Eau Claire, with Dr. Jerry Hoepner and Dr. Thomas Sather, communication sciences and disorders: “Exploring Snapchat as a Dynamic Capture Tool for Social Exchange in Persons with Aphasia.”