Celebrating Student Research and Scholarship


Kennesaw State really is the best of all worlds for students interested in participating in research opportunities while in school. KSU does an excellent job threading the needle of being both student-centered and research-driven. Amy Buddie, director of undergraduate research within the Office of Research, and her team have been instrumental in providing experiential learning opportunities across the University. This includes an annual public forum in which undergraduate and graduate students can share their research and scholarship.

Held every spring, the Symposium of Student Scholars quickly pivoted last April to a virtual conference due to the pandemic in order to ensure that students would not miss out on this valuable experience. The conference was a resounding success as 343 students presented more than 160 projects through a virtual format.

Now for the first time in its 24-year history, the Symposium of Student Scholars has expanded to include a fall virtual edition to accommodate the growing University enrollment and increased student engagement in research at KSU. The symposium will be held on Thursday, Dec. 3 from 1-5 p.m. via Microsoft® Teams.

Presenters will be assigned unique access codes and designated times for their virtual presentations that will take place in different “rooms.” The symposium also is publicly accessible, so visitors can use the access codes found on the symposium website to join the presentations of their choice.

Nearly 100 projects will be shared during the symposium ranging in disciplines from music and electrical engineering to nursing, geography and anthropology. A sampling of our undergraduate and graduate student presenters includes: 

  • Dorothy Corbett, senior public relations major, is examining the effects of social media on the extreme behavior of fans engaging in celebrity worship online. (Faculty mentor: Laura Beth Daws)
  • Christopher Focht, senior mechanical engineering major, conducts research which focuses on the construction and testing of a UV-C light box that could be used in sterilizing face masks. (Faculty mentor: Andrew Hummel)
  • Songqiao Yu, master’s student in computer science, is presenting two projects studying the psychological applications of virtual reality gamification. One project aims to enhance medical students’ empathy level toward patients with uncommon diseases by engaging them in a simulated environment in which they experience the daily challenges of a person with a diagnosis such as Parkinson’s Disease. (Faculty mentor: Joy Li)
  • Courtney Linkous, master’s student in integrative biology, is delving into the adaptability of animals when faced with unpredictable environmental challenges – in this case, how urbanization can affect food sources and habitats. (Faculty mentor: Sarah Guindre-Parker)

This Thursday, take an hour or two out of your busy day if you can to sit in on one of the student presentations. The full schedule and list of research presentations can be found online at: https://research.kennesaw.edu/our/symposium-student-scholars/fall-edition.php

Pamela Whitten


Written By Whitten