Students present work at Academic Symposium

By Chloe Nott

Quincy University hosted its fourth annual Academic Symposium in which students presented original research in front of QU staff, faculty, and students.

The presentations took place from April 6th through 14th at a variety of locations including the MacHugh Theatre, Connie Niemann South Auditorium, Cyber Futures Wing in Francis Hall, and the Hall of Fame Room in the Health and Fitness Center.

Twenty-seven students took part in the symposium. Some projects were group efforts, while others worked individually.

Several departments were represented at the symposium. These included the Division of Science & Technology, Division of Humanities, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences, Division of Fine Arts and Communication, and the School of Business.

Each student worked with a mentor throughout their research process. Eight QU faculty members served as mentors including Vicky Eidson, D.Mgt., Jennifer Breeden, M.B.A., Kimberly Hale, Ph.D., Caitlin Deskins, Ph.D., Husam Ghazaleh, Ph.D., Michael Keller, Ph.D., Christine Damm, D.M.A., and Kristina Mouzakis, Ph.D.

Although Jeremiah Baselice is a computer science major, he decided to conduct research in the English field for his symposium project. After completing an English project based on a video game in his senior year of high school, Baselice thought he could conduct research on the suitability of video games to be used as another storytelling medium in English classes.

“When I heard about the academic symposium thing I got almost nostalgic for that time so I wanted to look further into it, so I did,” Baselice said.

Baselice was able to attend some of the other presentations, and felt the presenting process was interesting.

“I enjoyed actually presenting it and getting to hear other people’s presentations too, to see their fields and get a glimpse into their world,” Baselice said.

There was limited viewing capacity at the presentations, however, the entire Academic Symposium is now available to view online. Viewers are also able to provide feedback to the student presenters and their mentors.  

Prizes are awarded to a student and their faculty mentor from each department, including graduate studies programs. Support for some of the research was also given in the form of scholarships. The NSF S-STEM Grant and Title III-A Strengthening Institutions grant assisted students researching areas in science and technology.

Samuele Contestabile participated in two presentations. One focused on the Best Ways to Market Education and another on Crypto, NFTs, and blockchain. Contestabile said the symposium was a great opportunity to improve his public speaking skills and tell people about a topic he is passionate about.

“I believe that the topic that we were talking about was important and I think not many people know about it,” Contestabile said. “I think my favorite part was probably the blockchain and how it’s important in terms of not just cryptocurrencies and NFTs but just in general because it has lots of aspects that can be revolutionizing.”

Contestabile and some of his fellow classmates have started looking into making their first investments into cryptocurrencies.

QU plans to continue hosting the academic symposium to showcase student research and achievement. All students are welcome to submit applications to present at the 2022 symposium.

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