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Symposium Offers an Opportunity to Share Research Findings

Symposium at Penn state York
Josh Fixelle, a former Penn State Abington student who is completing his degree at University Park, shared his research findings on asteriod deflection that he did along with Mikhail Kagan, a faculty member in physics and astronomy at Abington.
11/17/2010 —
Asteroid deflection, one and two-dimensional electrostatic interaction of two charged lines, and the behavioral responses of mosquito larvae to chemicals in the environment were just a few of the topics presented during the fourth Smith Undergraduate Science Research Symposium (SUSR10) on Nov. 6 at Penn State York. Science students and faculty from the 19 commonwealth campuses were invited to participate and attend the SUSR10.

In addition to formal presentations, attendees also had the opportunity to review poster exhibits and talk with students and faculty about their research during the daylong event. Faculty projects addressing research issues at all levels (undergraduate, graduate, and beyond) were also included in the non-refereed poster presentations. The symposium proceedings included the refereed and non-refereed abstracts and articles. Undergraduate research projects conducted by students that are supervised by faculty or projects investigated by faculty with assistance of students are part of the refereed symposium proceedings publication.

A symposium featuring undergraduate science research was the idea of Haiduke Sarafian, Ph.D., John T. and Paige S. Smith Professor of Science and professor of physics at Penn State York, back in 2002 and was supported by the campus. The symposium is held every other year and is free for participants. Symposiums were held in October 2002 and 2006, and November 2008.

“This is an important event and Dr. Sarafian and this campus are to be commended for providing this opportunity to showcase undergraduate research in science,” said Norman Freed, Ph.D., associate dean, Eberly College of Science, The Pennsylvania State University, who attended the symposium.

At the conclusion of the symposium, attendees were taken on a tour of the campus’s new science facility, the Edward M. Elias Science Building, which opened in May. The 15,000-square foot facility contains two chemistry labs, one biology lab, a general purpose classroom, and chemistry and
biology research spaces. Additionally, members of the biology and chemistry faculty have their offices in the building. Faculty offices are primarily located on the lower level of the building.

The symposium is named to honor benefactor and friends, John T. Smith and the late Paige S. Smith. Both graduates of Penn State, they established a scholarship in their name as well as the John T. and Paige S. Smith Professorship in Science at the campus. In addition to their donations to York, the Smiths have supported the colleges of agriculture and health and human development, as well as athletics.

For more information on the symposium, please contact Haiduke Sarafian, Ph.D., John T. and Paige S. Smith Professor of Science and chair of the symposium committee, at (717) 771-4093 or has2@psu.edu.
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