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Buffalo State to Host SUNY Undergraduate Research Conference April 23


Buffalo State College’s Science and Mathematics Complex will be teeming with research from students across the State University of New York (SUNY) on Saturday, April 23, when the campus hosts the 2022 SUNY Undergraduate Research Conference (SURC) for the first time.

Now in its eighth year, the multidisciplinary daylong event brings together undergraduate students and faculty mentors from SUNY schools for sessions devoted to student presentations, along with the SUNY Graduate School and Career Fair and professional development workshops for students and faculty. 

Students will display their research posters in SAMC’s first-floor atrium and deliver oral presentations in the adjacent classrooms beginning at 9:30 a.m. and running until 4:00 p.m.

Buffalo State President Katherine Conway-Turner will present opening remarks, and Gerard Puccio, SUNY Distinguished Professor and chair of the Center for Applied Imagination, will deliver the lunchtime keynote address, “Creative Thinking: Introduction of a Twenty-First Century Success Skill.” Special guest Keith Landa, president of the University Faculty Senate, will be in attendance.

SURC will serve in place of Buffalo State’s 24th annual Student Research and Creativity Conference (SRCC).

“What’s exciting this year is that students have an expanded opportunity to shine,” said Scott Goodman, Buffalo State professor of chemistry and director of undergraduate research, who is serving as the conference’s co-coordinator. “They get to present their research findings to peers and faculty from other esteemed schools within SUNY, in addition to the ones at Buffalo State. For some students, their presentations represent two to three years of research.”

About 360 students from across 28 SUNY colleges and universities are expected to attend—from as close as the University at Buffalo to as far away as Stony Brook University. Of that total, 185 are Buffalo State students who conducted research in the following academic areas: Arts; Business, Fashion and Textile Technology, and Hospitality and Tourism; Communication and Humanities; Computer Information Systems and Engineering Technology; Education; Health and Social Work; Mathematics; Physical Geography and Sciences; and Psychology and Social Sciences.

“SRCC’s traditional disciplinary categories are recognized at SURC for the purpose of the oral presentation sessions, which are grouped in related disciplines with a Buffalo State faculty moderator in that area,” explained Carolyn Guzski, associate professor of music, who serves as the Buffalo State representative to SURC and is co-coordinating this year’s conference. “The poster sessions, however, will be mixed-discipline, due to the much higher participation numbers from across SUNY.”

In addition, three Buffalo State students are exhibiting art projects in SAMC, and two groups of dancers, from Buffalo State and SUNY Geneseo, are performing Legacy in Dance and Herstory: Performance as Social Change, respectively, after the keynote address.

A Buffalo Stateonly version of the SURC conference program, which includes Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowship awardees’ biographies and photos, will soon be posted on the Undergraduate Research website.

Students who want to continue their academic pursuits will have the chance to attend a workshop on writing grants for graduate school and to obtain information about various SUNY programs during the graduate college fair.

Because SRCC had to be held virtually the past two years during the pandemic, holding the larger conference in person at Buffalo State is especially satisfying.

“A conference like this should be about meeting people and being engaged all day long,” Goodman said. “That is much easier to accomplish in person.

“And the timing is perfect,” he added. “We’re grateful we have the opportunity to host the conference during the college’s 150th anniversary, when we’re celebrating all the ways in which Buffalo State has provided academic excellence and continues to do so.”

Conference attendance is free for Buffalo State students and faculty members, $25 for students from other SUNY schools, and $35 for other SUNY faculty. SURC is supported by the University Faculty Senate, in conjunction with the SUNY Provost’s Office and the Buffalo State Research Foundation.