The diversity of research at Stephen F. Austin State University will be highlighted during a public forum March 31. University Scholars have been chosen from each of SFA's colleges to present an interactive presentation, and University Finalists were selected to prepare poster presentations. The University Scholars selected will discuss their research topics in 15-minute interactive speeches.

"Each department or college nominated students, and typically, the college put together a committee to choose the winners," Dr. Michael Tkacik, director of the School of Honors, said. "Each University Scholar will receive a $250 award for their work, provided by the Provost's Office."

Last year, the College of Liberal and Applied Arts hosted a small research conference, but this is the first year the university has come together to celebrate and reward the work of students in all six colleges, Tkacik said. There are eight University Scholars and 46 University Finalists.

"The purpose of this is twofold," Tkacik said. "One, to recognize the outstanding student research we have ongoing at SFA; and two, to celebrate and reward the research. Not many undergraduates conduct research, and these students are doing research that is recognized at higher education levels. We wanted to have an event to show their work to the public."

The event, co-directed by Tkacik and English professor Elizabeth Tasker will take place on the second floor of the Baker Pattillo Student Center. The poster presentations will be displayed from 1 to 2:30 p.m. in the Grand Ballroom, and the interactive presentations will take place from 2:30 to 5 p.m. in the Twilight Ballroom. There is no admission charge, and the public is invited to attend.

University Scholars will present their research on topics including: "Aggravated Assault Rates in Texas," Rhiannon Lackey, Nelson Rusche College of Business, Department of Economics; "Physical Therapy - Manual Therapy versus Myofascial Release," Sara Baker, James I. Perkins College of Education, Department of Kinesiology and Health Science; "Turn of the Century Recital," John Green, College of Fine Arts, School of Music; "Trash (In) Action," Leon York, Donald Braman and Arika L. Kulhavy, Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, Division of Environmental Science; "Getting Rid of the Evil Doers: Why Pakistan Should Be Top Priority in the War on Terror," Demarcus D. Tave, College of Liberal and Applied Arts, Department of Government; and "Spectroscopic Studies of 3-Nitrofluoranthene and Fluoranthene," Matthew Edison Parks, College of Sciences and Mathematics, Department of Chemistry.

University Finalists are: Lexie Butler, Kati Van Dunk, Teresa Powell, Tara Toner, Tim Ward, Anthony Cardwell, Logan Fountain, Tiffany Snider, Tyler Bishop, Nicole Kurr, Jennifer McFarland, Brandon Rogers, Jacob Martin, Penny McClendon, Brian Watson and Jimanna Watson, College of Business; Claire Collins, Kim Stockley, Whitney Kirkland, Candise Juarez and Alexandra Salazar, College of Education; Teresa Kaye Powell, Christian Teague and Sesha Wallace, College of Fine Arts; and Erin Stempinski, Jarrett Sullivan, Katelyn Kowalczyk, Regine Skelton, Charity Vaughn and Stacey Carr, College of Forestry.

Also selected as University Finalists were Natalie Arriola, Cortni Davis, Kelly Downey, Paul Harwell, Elise Hopkins, Stephanie Mendoza and Savannah Williamson, College of Liberal and Applied Arts; and Jacqueline Greer, Eileen Rigsby, Kerron Joseph, Jal Walbran, Harvey Marquis III, Roberto Molina, Racheal Persuad, Sarah Power, and Brandon Tate; College of Sciences and Mathematics.

For more information, call (936) 468-2813.