Wolf Pack Discoveries shines a light on student research, scholarship and creation activities

“The University of Nevada at Reno has a thriving population of undergraduate students conducting research, assessment, academic work, and creative pursuits,” said Tanya Kelley, director of undergraduate research. “Wolf Pack Discoveries is a collaborative event for students to showcase their work from extracurricular and academic opportunities, and it helps them develop presentation skills for a professional event regardless of the format. “

Many student researchers presented work supported by grants. For example, Undergraduate Research, which is part of the University’s Research and Innovation division, offers several funding scholarship opportunities and helps student researchers find a mentor and prepare proposals or presentations.

“Normally that would be intimidating, but everyone is encouraging; the possibilities for funding allocation were encouraging. It gives you confidence to try it, ”said Leonardo Rodriguez, a College of Science student researcher who received a Nevada Undergraduate Research Award (NURA) for his quantum physics-based project, and was then selected to receive a Additional Daugherty-Westfall. Research grant.

What attracts these students to research during their undergraduate years? Interviews with some student researchers elicited several responses, all centered on passion and personal interest.

College of Science student researcher and presenter Saige Howard received a NURA and was also shortlisted for a Daugherty-Westfall Research Award for her paleontological project involving isotopes. Of the research experience, Howard said, “It helps me understand what I want to be and do. This gives real insight into the research process.

Talaya Flicop, a sophomore psychology student, plans to continue her undergraduate research next year and explore emerging themes identified through her “Check“ Other ”project: non-binary people of color and people of color. various genres. The support of a Pack Research Experience Program (PREP) has helped Flicop to balance her time and to devote more time to her research project and less to an outside job.

A desire to represent and protect marginalized communities led Honors College student Alondra Espinoza-Cervantes to her project, “All in This Together? Solidarity among people of color ”, which she described as exploring“ how people of color become allies to the people they represent ”.

Landon Morrison, another MSTS recipient, in attendance.

Duncan Brown’s interest in the outdoors and “for future generations” led him to pursue his studies in environmental and metallurgical engineering and his undergraduate research project to assess the environmental footprint. the transport of nuclear waste. He is one of six student researchers who received an award supported by Mission Support and Test Services (MSTS), which manages operations at the Nevada National Security Site. As Brown said, the subject of nuclear waste transportation is “super important to Nevada.”

“The tenacity and strong work ethic demonstrated by this next generation of innovators will translate into lasting results,” said Karla Hernandez, associate director of TRIO programs, which includes the McNair Scholars program. Hernandez also commended the faculty and staff involved in encouraging and supporting these students.

Mridul Gautam, vice president of research and innovation, noted that Wolf Pack Discoveries marks another important milestone in the development of undergraduate research at the University.

“This new event provides a wonderful opportunity to showcase the hard work, dedication and contributions of undergraduates and their mentors,” said Gautam. “These programs aim to open doors for students from all walks of life and from all walks of life in the colleges and degree programs of this university, and to enhance their educational experience.”

Wolf Pack Discoveries is expected to return in April 2022 to highlight undergraduate student activities carried out during the spring semester 2022.

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