Thousands Come to KSU to Celebrate Undergraduate Research


There are more than 4,200 universities in the United States, but only one — Kennesaw State University — was selected to host the 2019 National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR). Held every year at a different university, NCUR brings together thousands of undergraduate students from around the country to showcase their research.

KSU is the only university in Georgia ever to host this national conference, and we are already breaking records. We have 4,650 registrants right now coming from more than 400 universities — the biggest attendance in the history of this event.

Preparations for NCUR have been more than a year in the making, and KSU conference co-organizers Amy Buddie, director of undergraduate research, and Chris Cornelison, associate director of undergraduate research, have gone the extra mile in emphasizing the value of undergraduate research in a variety of disciplines and how it gives our students advantages in their future careers.

Among the attendees will be more than 800 participants from 30 colleges and universities in Georgia. KSU will be leading the charge with 400 of our students taking part in presentations. Those include students like fifth-year architecture student Darral Tate and public health education major and honors student Erica Lundak. Darral, mentored by associate professor of architecture Ed Akins, is presenting his research on designing prisons to increase learning opportunities for inmates to prepare them for success once they are released. Erica, who has worked with WellStar professor James Annesi, will be presenting research on the positive impact physical activity can have on Parkinson’s patients.

One of the things that makes NCUR particularly special is how it is bringing our campus community together. We have more than 1,000 community volunteers, most of whom are KSU students, faculty and staff. Additionally, many faculty members have encouraged their students to attend the oral and poster presentations as part of their class assignments.

NCUR presents a wonderful opportunity for us to showcase Kennesaw State as a recognized leader in the area of undergraduate research while giving our own students unique access to some of the nation’s top researchers. So as colleagues from around the nation arrive on our beautiful campus for NCUR this week, let’s show them some real Owl hospitality.

Pamela Whitten


Written By Whitten