Pepperdine Hosts SoCal Conference for Undergraduate Research
Pepperdine Magazine is the feature magazine for Pepperdine University and its growing community of alumni, students, faculty, staff, and friends.
Nearly 1,000 undergraduate scholars from Southern California arrived on the Malibu campus November 20 to present or absorb research on a myriad of academic disciplines at the 18th annual Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research (SCCUR). Students from close to 50 regional colleges and universities presented more than 500 projects at the conference, themed "Riding the Crest of Discovery," representing a full range of degree subjects.
"Typically a conference is focused on one topic, but this conference, by design, celebrates research diversity across the disciplines," says Stephen Davis, Distinguished Professor of Biology and conference codirector. "We don't even have an engineering program at Seaver College, but we included engineering presentations from other schools such as California State Polytechnic. The conference extended beyond what our own students normally experience."
Approximately 100 Pepperdine students participated, presenting an assortment of research topics including local-interest studies of native aquatic life in the Santa Monica Mountains and an analysis of diversity at Seaver College.
The conference series was founded in 1993 at the California Institute of Technology by a group of Los Angeles-based educators to improve education for undergraduate students through hands-on experiences of research and creative activity.
"I enjoyed the excitement and energy of the young scholars as they just began catching new enthusiasm for research and making the realization that they have something to contribute," adds Davis. "It regenerated my hope for the future—these students have so much talent and ability, as evidenced by their presentations."