FARMINGTON, ME (April 26, 2022)—UMF Symposium, an annual event that gives students the opportunity to present their original research and creative projects to both the campus and local community, was recently held by the University of Maine at Farmington. It is a spring celebration of undergraduate research and student achievement that is supported throughout the year by dedicated faculty mentors, from proposal to presentation.
UMF students from diverse academic disciplines across campus participated in the annual Symposium celebration by sharing their original research findings, analysis and creative work in lectures, demonstrations and interactive poster sessions.
“First held in 1999, the UMF Symposium represents the richness of academic rigor, original student research, and dedicated faculty mentoring that is a Farmington hallmark and takes place all over campus throughout the year. Though this year may have presented its challenges, it has also empowered our students to think creatively, our campus to collaborate thoughtfully, and our faculty to support the highest level of learning,” said Edward Serna, UMF president.
As in year’s past, this year’s event was kicked off the evening before by Arts Night, a festive evening featuring student work in the visual, performing and literary arts. These included a concert of improvised music; a Surrealist fashion show and micro-salon; and a series of back-to-back artistic, sound, cultural and theatrical presentations by performing arts seniors.
The following day, the Farmington Symposium featured presentations by the 2021-22 Michael Wilson Scholars awardees. This selective program helps students explore high-level research topics and present them in a professional setting. They were joined by students from diverse academic disciplines across campus who shared their original research findings, analysis and creative work in lectures, demonstrations and interactive poster sessions.
As part of Earth Week, the Spring UMF Garden Open House was hosted by students in the Dig It! Gardening for Social Change English course. This Symposium event featured a greenhouse tour, spring planting and winter sowing project.
These topics included, “Presidential Privilege and the Supreme Court”; “Attitudes Toward Animal Adoption”; “A Mixed-Media Investigation of Anxiety”; “A Campus Carbon Study”; The Impact of Climate Change on Deer Ticks in Maine” and “Preservice Teacher Research on Place-based Education.”
In addition, special events included a presentation by Nicole Kellett, UMF associate professor of anthropology, this year’s UMF Trustee Professor. The UMS Trustee Professorship was created to recognize exemplary faculty members and promote excellence in academic programs. Kellett’s research presentation, “Bearing Witness: Women’s Stories of War, Survival & Connection,” is based on a long-term life history project with Graciela Orihuela Rocha, a war survivor from Peru.
As part of Earth Week, the Spring UMF Garden Open House was hosted by students in the Dig It! Gardening for Social Change English course also co-sponsored by the UMF Sustainable Campus Coalition. This Symposium event featured a greenhouse tour, spring planting and winter sowing project.
The day’s events also featured the awarding of the Walter Sargent Undergraduate Mentor Award to Rachel Hovey, assistant professor of biology and the Harvey Aft Award for Excellence in Chemistry to Chelsey Drake for outstanding scholarship and excellence in upper-level chemistry. Drake, a senior from Farmington, is a geology major in the Earth & Environmental Science program. She plans to study planetary science after graduation.
A memorial event was also held to honor the career of David Gibson, a much-loved Professor of Geology. Gibson’s career spanned over 25 years during which he was named UMF Trustee Professor for 2009-10, received the Walter Sargent Undergraduate Research Mentor Award in 2018, and given the prestigious Undergraduate Research Mentor Award by the Geosciences Division of the Council on Undergraduate Research in 2019.
More on University of Maine at Farmington
A nationally-recognized public liberal arts college known for its commitment to student success, UMF provides a challenging yet supportive environment to prepare students for both careers and further study. Rooted in a tradition of teacher preparation, UMF offers top quality programs in the arts and sciences, teacher preparation, and pre-professional studies. Located in the heart of Maine’s four-season outdoor recreational region, UMF is a welcoming, close-knit academic community that prepares students for engaged citizenship, enriching professional careers and an enduring love of learning.
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Photo Caption: UMF students from diverse academic disciplines across campus participated in the annual Symposium celebration by sharing their original research findings, analysis and creative work in lectures, demonstrations and interactive poster sessions.
Photo Credit: UMF Image
Photo Caption: As part of Earth Week, the Spring UMF Garden Open House was hosted by students in the Dig It! Gardening for Social Change English course. This Symposium event featured a greenhouse tour, spring planting and winter sowing project.
Photo Credit: UMF Image