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Student research takes center stage at 8th annual University Day

Monday, 23 March 2009

From neural prosthetics to political cartoons to international service learning opportunities, students at the University of Maine at Presque Isle will be showcasing their academic research, scholarly work and community service on Wednesday, April 8 during the 8th Annual University Day. The theme of this year's event is Connecting Learning, Life and Community.

University Day is an event that heightens students' awareness of the work being done by peers in all of the disciplines represented on campus. The event allows students to better understand how disciplines interrelate and how the academic work they do applies to the local and global community. It is also an opportunity for students to experience a professional conference format. No regular classes are held during University Day, but in their stead, students are encouraged to attend student-led presentations and talks held during five sessions throughout the day.

More than 220 students will offer more than 30 talks and presentations, covering areas of study as wide ranging as recreation, criminal justice, social work, education, special education, psychology, mathematics, history, biology, literature, foreign language, and political science.

Many of the presentations address the event's theme of the connections between learning and the community. The International Students Club also will host its Culturefest 2009 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Pullen 210, offering presentations on the theme A Peek at our Global Communities. Throughout the day, there will also be poster sessions in Pullen 111, 212, and 214 and displays from student clubs and organizations along the halls of Pullen/Folsom.

To add to the community spirit of the day, the University will open its doors to the public. The University Day committee has invited honors students from local high schools and community members are welcome to attend all sessions. The Admissions Office is holding an open house during University Day, from 10 a.m. to Noon in the Campus Center. Prospective students and their parents are invited to attend and encouraged to sit in on afternoon University Day sessions as part of their campus experience. Topics of the open house will include the academic, athletic and student life experiences. The open house also will feature a panel of current students, and financial aid and application information.

During lunch, Neal Labrie will be presented with the Young Alumni Award. Labrie graduated from the University in 1997 with a bachelor's degree in Recreation and Leisure Services. Labrie now serves as a Chief Ranger for the United States Department of the Interior's National Park Service. He works at the Katmai National Park and Preserve in King Salmon, Alaska, where his duties include overseeing all emergency, law enforcement and resource protection operations for more than 5 million acres of National Park Service lands.

In the evening, the University's Distinguished Lecturer Series will present the Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow Robert Wiener, the Founder and Executive Director of the California Coalition for Rural Housing Project, which has been the leading voice in California for the production and preservation of affordable rural housing since 1981. Wiener will speak at 7 p.m. in the Campus Center on Preserving Rural Life in Tough Times: Strategies to Combat Shelter Poverty and Stabilize Communities.

A complete schedule of University Day activities can be found at www.umpi.edu/uday.