Undergrads invited to showcase knowledge

By Kelley Apoldo

Dressed in full 19th-century costume, Lisa Woods created and performed a one-person play personifying the life of Emily Dickinson.

Woods, a recent UK graduate, put on the hour-long production of “The Belle of Amherst” for local high school juniors to tell the story of the poet and to promote “the opportunities of the Department of Theatre to future UK students,” said Evie Russell, adviser and programs coordinator for undergraduate education.

Woods was one of over 125 UK undergraduates who participated in last year’s Showcase for Undergraduate Scholars, which is meant to “increase awareness and the number of undergraduates participating in research and independent creative activities,” Russell said.

Applications to participate in the third annual Showcase for Undergraduate Scholars are now being accepted and are due by March 31. The program is sponsored by the Society for the Promotion of Undergraduate Research (SPUR) and Experiences in Undergraduate Research and Kreative Activities (eUreKa). Participation is open to all undergraduate students and applications can be submitted online at the eUreKa Web site (www.uky.edu/


The majority of students choose to display their research using a poster or an oral presentation, Russell said, but there are not a lot of limitations.

The Showcase for Undergraduate Scholars was developed three years ago in order to help UK reach the top-20 national status, Russell said, and UK President Lee Todd is “extremely supportive but unfortunately will not be able to attend this year.”

Russell believes that participation in the Showcase can put students a step above other students.

“The sooner they can get involved in education outside of the classroom, the better they are going to be — the better student, the better individual, a much more well-rounded person,” Russell said.

The event gives students and faculty the opportunity to see the kinds of projects and research that is being done by undergraduates in various colleges at UK.

“Research is taking place in every discipline across campus, and the showcase is an example of that,” Russell said.

This year, the showcase will be held April 23 in the Student Center Grand Ballroom from 4 to 8 p.m. The UK debate team will kick off the event and students from a nutrition and food science class will cater it. The event will include guest speakers Philipp Kraemer, associate provost for undergraduate education, and Phil Harling, history professor and chair of the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence, which includes eUreKa.

Local high school students, UK students, faculty and staff are all encouraged to attend the free event, Russell said.