FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 07
There are several ways to find out who is the smartest of the smartest - trivia games, chess matches, spelling bees and many others. But the honors program at Oklahoma City University has a flashier way of doing things.
Come next Friday, Nov. 14, the Honors Undergraduate Research Day Poster Contest will attempt to settle once and for all, at least for this year, who the smartest students are and whether they can show it with creativity.
The contest has been going for almost a decade with prize money on the line. Regina Bennett, assistant director of the OCU Honors Program, explained how the contest works.
Students do a research project in one of many categories, and then create a poster display that reflects what they learned. Entries can either be an individual endeavor or a group project, and the list of potential topics is practically endless.
Bennett said some of the entries so far this year are titled “Both Sides of the Border” on the topic of immigration, “History and Evolution of Jazz” and “P53 Structure in Cancer Therapy.” She anticipates at least 50 posters will be turned in this year.
After the posters are entered, faculty members begin dividing them into whatever categories best describe them - biology, social science, the environment and global awareness, to name a few examples - and the judging begins. The judges look for visual interest in the posters, knowledge of the field, documentation and other aspects. Prizes are awarded for first through third place in each category.
The posters are on display in the University Center Great Hall from 11 a.m. until the winners are announced at about 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 14.
“This is the kind of contest that gets the students to think about their future careers,” Bennett said. “It shows how well they learn, like taking a test, and combines it with creative expression when it comes time to teach others.”