A few days prior to the research poster presentations, SURE students were told to prepare an elevator pitch for the promotion of “their science.” This pitch was suggested to ensure the students could effectively communicate their research and findings to all members of the audience, and included answers to the following questions:
- - What is being investigated?
- - Why is it being investigated?
- - How was the investigation conducted?
- - What was found during the investigation?
- - What directions should future investigations take based on current findings?
This pitch, as well as detailed elaborations of the students’ research, was given to several members in varying disciplines of the science community last Friday at UK’s Hilary J. Boone Center. The discussions of research findings were accompanied by the students completed research poster masterpieces. Posters were aesthetically pleasing and complimented research discussions with a “picture” of depth balanced with simplicity. Poster topics ranged from “Tobacco-free Youth Advocacy Programs in a Rural, Low Socioeconomic Status Community” to “Characterizing insulin receptors using immunochemistry in aging rodents treated long-term with intranasal insulin.”
Students discussed their science with the different members of audience for two hours and received positive feedback on their presentations. What was amazing was the enthusiasm and ownership of students regarding their work. If an individual is a trained and focused scientist, it is challenging to convince them of the importance of research outside of their area of expertise. However, after hours of engaging discussions, the widening of the mind and opening of the eyes of others (including myself) occurred. This alone is a testament to how involved and effective the students’ talks were. The culmination of the research projects described not only alerted me to the environmental contribution to health, but also of the many facets of environmental health research.
The effort, mastery, and ownership of the students displayed during the poster session is evidence of the success of the 2017 Summer Undergraduate Research in Pharmacology and Environmental Sciences Program.
Brittany Rice, M.S.
Nutritional Sciences Doctoral Student
Graduate Research Assistant