Get Curious about CURIO, Conference highlights student research

Tom Barszcz

The Center for Undergraduate Research and Intellectual Opportunities, or “CURIO” for short, holds a symposium each year. The event was created by the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (CLASS) for the division’s undergraduate students to showcase special projects and incredible findings from intensive research they have conducted. There will be a wide variety of projects and research findings that stretch across several different fields of study, from political science studies, to philosophy projects and even a screenplay.

In order to be part of the CURIO symposium, students must write a 250 word proposal of their projects as well as find a GSU faculty member to mentor them throughout the project. The project is then submitted to Dr. Christina Abreu, who is the lead organizer of this year’s CURIO event. The proposal is looked over by Abreu and a group of faculty members known as the Student Creative Activity & Research Committee. One of the committee members is Dr. Dustin Anderson, who gave his insight about the importance of CURIO

“In a lot of ways the symposium is meant to highlight the important things going on in classes that aren’t heard about…we want to make it a celebration of the work students have done more than anything else” Anderson said. “It’s one thing to talk about what CLASS students and faculty can do versus show what they can do.”

Abreu also gave her insight about the event as not only the lead organizer of CURIO, but as a mentor for several students who will be presenting yearlong projects next week.

“We would like to see more students and faculty get involved because we see it as the premiere place for CLASS undergraduates to share their research and their creative activities…it’s a nice end of the year celebration for students and faculty for all their hard work,” Abreu said.

Caleb Still, a junior history major, is presenting a project on “Young Lords”, a Puerto Rican street gang from Chicago.

“[The gang] attempted to legitimize themselves as a political party in order to better establish Latin American rights…It’s a pretty interesting topic that gets forgotten when talking about the Civil Rights Movement,” Still said.

Still explained that in conducting on this research and working with his professor, he gained a whole new perspective

“Before this, I thought conducting research like this would be really tough, but once you learn how to do it, it becomes a really interesting learning experience,” Still said.

Xavieria Jeffers, a senior political science and history major, is presenting her research about the Welfare State in the United States by a comparative analysis of the Welfare State in Great Britain.

“The great thing about presenting at CURIO is you can take your idea and do whatever you like with it and in doing so you gain personal relationships with professors but also connections for people outside of the University,” Jeffers said.

The symposium will take place Thursday, April 19 at 6 p.m. in the Carroll Building. The “poster session” will occur from 6:15-7:00 p.m. wherein some students will be next to their projects presented via poster board. The “concurrent paper sessions” will take place in several different rooms within the Carroll Building from 6:20-8:20 p.m. This part of the event will be more of a showcase style wherein students will be addressing a room in explaining their projects.