Students present research forum

Every year The Anthropology Club hosts the Society and Culture Undergraduate Research Forum (SCURF) in hopes of providing students the opportunity to present their research in a professional setting.

SCURF will be presenting “Imprints: Humanity’s Footprint on Time and Space.” The keynote speaker for the sixth annual forum will be Matthew Clark, associate professor and department chair of geography and global studies at Sonoma State. The forum will be held on Wednesday in Ballrooms B, C and D of the SSU Student Center from 5 to 9 p.m.

The event welcomes all students from a variety of majors and offers them the unique experience of sharing their research and being published. SCURF will feature nine podium presentations and seven poster presentations this year.

Clark is also the director of Center for Interdisciplinary Geospatial Analysis (CIGA). As director, Clark traveled to Tucumán Province in Argentina on sabbatical to research how projected climate change and agricultural expansion contributed to the deforestation of Latin America and the Caribbean between 2001 and 2010.

In conclusion to his research, Clark and Mitchell Aide, a professor at the University of Puerto Rico, created a five-year Dynamics of Coupled Natural and Human Systems (CNH). Clark and Aide created this solution in hopes to bring light of the rehabilitation of forests, woodlands and shrublands throughout South America.

In addition to Clark, the students presenting at SCURF are looking forward to participating in the forum. Anthropology major, Lauren Russ, will be giving a podium presentation on her research titled, “Cumulativeness in Non-Human Primates Suggests Cultural Capability.” Russ explained why SCURF is such a valuable tool for students.

“I think it is an amazing opportunity to not only present research to a forum, but to also have the opportunity to have your research published as an undergraduate student,” said Russ. “At least I know one of the many research papers I have written will have been published, and to me, this is the most important one I’ve done so far.”

Paul Martinez, sociology major, will be presenting on “Fostering Multicultural Competence through Inter-Group Dialogues: Process, Outcomes and Reflections.”

“Presenting research at a conference is a vital experience in order to enhance one’s academic career and looks great for graduate school,” said Martinez.

For geography major, Hannah Zucherman, SCURF was the perfect opportunity to showcase her research in preparation for her presentation in May at the California Geographical Society Conference.

SCURF welcomes all students, friends, family and faculty to attend the annual forum. Admission is free and refreshments will be provided to those in attendance.

Ballrooms B, C and D of the Student Center will showcase two simultaneous podium presentations in two separate rooms, along with a poster session in another. At the end of the evening, one podium and one poster presentation will receive a certificate of excellence deeming the best research presentations of SCURF 2014.

Chief Coordinator for SCURF Diego Rocha is ecstatic about the upcoming event, but is also looking forward to what the future of SCURF has in store.

“I am slightly saddened at the fact this is my last year working with SCURF, since I am graduating this year,” said Rocha. “I can only hope I have left an imprint on SCURF’s evolution as much as it has on me.”