Last Week TRU held its 10th annual Undergraduate Research & Innovation Conference. That we managed to do so while our fearless leader, Elizabeth Rennie, was away at ACRL is a testament to Elizabeth’s organization skill.
After hearing several speakers say with regret that Elizabeth “couldn’t be here today” I took the floor at the closing ceremony to explain that Elizabeth was away at a conference — and not just any conference, but the ACRL conference in Portland, where she and a group of library technicians were presenting a poster on community outreach through promotional displays in an academic library.
The TRU Undergrad Conference includes posters, presentations, a theatre production, and an art show. As always, I was impressed not only with the quality of the students’ work, but also with the enthusiasm and dedication of the students and faculty who volunteered their time, and of the opportunities the conference afforded for informal students/faculty interaction.
We know that face-time with faculty outside of the classroom is a major determinant of student engagement, but sometimes we don’t seem to know quite how to foster informal student/faculty interaction. The students are busy. The faculty are busy. So the best way to bring them together may be to arrange for them to be busy together!