Promoting student research
Scholars' Day is open to student or faculty submissions, and we are especially interested in promoting student participation, so we are asking faculty to help.
Presenting at a conference is an event that offers tremendous opportunities for student development. For most of the students who present at Scholars' Day, it is their first experience of the kind, and they are sure to remember it well. Scholars' Day provides students with the full intellectual experience of conference presentations, and it provides a valuable addition to their resumés.
And faculty are in a unique position to help students develop exceptional work worth showcasing.
Presentations often begin as term paper projects or group projects in class, frequently integrated into syllabi or course curricula with Scholars' Day in mind. The most common type of project suitable for Scholars' Day is one that produces work that can be turned into a conference-style presentation on a focused topic, perhaps collaboratively shared with other students or faculty, although poster presentations and creative productions are also a part of Scholars' Day. These projects might be initiated in the fall semester or spring, but to meet the schedule, spring semester projects have to be completed early. The projects themselves are not always research papers: a review of the previous Scholars' Day schedule (see the link in the left-hand navigation bar) reveals research papers, engineering projects, and student-faculty collaborations that may have begun in lab courses.
Students are required to have a mentoring advisor for their project, and we expect this mentor to help the student(s) plan, complete, and prepare their projects for the formal presentation.
See our list of 10 Tips for Scholars’ Day Faculty Mentors
Since student presenters are eligible for scholarships, it's a good idea to consider the criteria used for selecting scholarship winners. A thorough description is available on our scholarships page, but in brief they are: student responsibility, depth of research, clarity, professionalism and delivery, and originality and creativity. The MCC library has a Library Guide on presentations with helpful advice for students; a skillful presentation is an important component to earning a scholarship.
Designing assignments that promote originality, motivating capable students to engage in these assignments, and helping them develop the project are important elements of successful student participation. The results are incredibly rewarding, for faculty and students alike.