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Poster Contest Mixes Knowledge with Creativity
Some college contests look for students with the most smarts. Others look for creativity. A contest Dec. 4 at Oklahoma City University combines both elements. The annual Undergraduate Research Day Poster Contest will decide which students did the best job of tackling their topics using visual presentation, knowledge of the field and proper documentation. Regina Bennett, assistant director of the OCU Honors Program, said even though the contest has been held for nearly a decade, she’s still surprised by the students’ ingenuity. “Every year, there are a few that catch your attention for their brilliance,” Bennett said. “Besides learning something new, students have an additional reason to give a little more effort with prize money on the line.” Students select research projects from a list of categories and create poster displays based on what they learned. Entries can either be an individual endeavor or a group project. Some of the entry titles this year are “Who ya gonna call?: The Effectiveness of Crime Stoppers,” “Social Contract Theory and the Right to Revolution” and “Traiting Places.” Bennett is expecting approximately 60 entries for this year’s contest. After the posters are entered, faculty members begin dividing them into categories — biology, social science, the environment and global awareness, to name a few examples — and the judging begins. Prizes are awarded for first through third place in each category. The posters will be on display in the Tom and Brenda McDaniel University Center Great Hall from 11 a.m. until the winners are announced at 1 p.m. Dec. 4. “This is the kind of contest that gets the students to think about their future careers,” Bennett said. “It shows how well they learn the subject and combines it with creative expression in teaching others.”