An SENR Interview
We had the opportunity to sit down recently with Brian Lower, associate professor in the School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR) to learn more about this year's Environmental Science Student Symposium.
What is the Environmental Science Student Symposium?
The Symposium is an annual event that exhibits the final poster project of students enrolled in Introduction to Environmental Science (ENR2100). ENR2100 is an introductory class for both science and non-science majors at The Ohio State University (OSU) that I co-instruct with Steven Lower, a professor in the SENR and the School of Earth Sciences.
How many students are participating this year?
725 students will share their posters at this year’s event.
That sure is a lot of posters. Tell us about some of the topics we might find at this year’s symposium.
In the past student posters have covered air pollution, biodiversity, climate change, coal, fresh water resources, food production, mining, and much more! Any and every recent research topic in environmental science students are interested in will be presented at the Symposium.
In its third year, what’s new?
We are working with the Office of Distance Education and eLearning to develop a new electronic peer-review system for this event that will be available to the public to use sometime after the symposium. The first large event that will use our system will be the State Science Day sponsored by the Ohio Academy of Sciences and OSU on May 16, 2014.
What do you hope students learn from this experience?
Students get to experience what it’s like to be a scientist - the event and the poster design, construction, presentation and the peer review process shows students first-hand what a scientist is and how the scientific process works.
Can faculty and staff at the university attend the symposium?
Yes, the symposium is open to the public. My co-instructor and I encourage and enjoy participation from the community. The experience provides students an opportunity to share the fruits of their labor and the knowledge they’ve gained on their topic. Presenting on their topic also helps the students develop critical presentation skills needed in their future professions.
Where can people learn more about this year’s Symposium?
Our team, including Kylienne Clark, an Instructional Aids Associate for the course, has developed a website for the Symposium to serve as a guide to the event for both student participants and visitors. The website address is: go.osu.edu/posterday