Winter/Spring 2001

Wabash Moments
Student Research and Creative Work
Celebration is "Vintage Wabash"

It may have been the quintessential Wabash Moment: religion major/chemistry minor and Little Giant right tackle Nick Nussbaum '01 teaching a Detchon Hall classroom packed with students, professors from the sciences and the humanities, and alumni from across the generations about the impact of quantum physics on modern theology.

In Detchon’s International Hall, Eric Fulmer '01 rushed from a poster session about his internship in industrial chemistry to present a paper on "Tchaikovsky and the Question of Russian Nationalism."

Doug Lukins '01 was constantly on the move, presenting both his exhibit of his photographs and the poster summarizing the biochemistry research he'd begun last summer with Associate Professor of Chemistry Ann Taylor.

They were just three of 57 students--each sponsored and mentored by a Wabash faculty member--teaching about their research and creative work January 26 at the College's first Celebration of Student Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work. Classes were cancelled for that afternoon for the first time in 28 years, but the rate of learning at the College may never have been higher.

The learning was so impressive that the faculty has voted to make it an annual event. Professor of Psychology Charlie Blaich, who with Professor Scott Feller organized the event, believes that presenting research findings to peers and professionals is "the final hook that gets students turned on to science."

From what we saw at the Celebration, the same goes for students of the humanities. And they weren't the only ones hooked.

"There were so many projects and such a great variety of topics," Professor of Biology Aus Brooks '61 told the local newspaper. "The quality was just very high."

"My students were already telling me about what they want to present next year," said Professor of Political Science Melissa Butler. "They're also saying that they need to make the work better if they're going to present it here. This event is raising the students' own standards, what they expect of themselves."

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