What does it mean to be a student at a leading global public research university? The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is showcasing the culture and community of research across disciplines as it celebrates its first-ever University Research Week from March 27-31.

A variety of in-class and public activities and events have been planned to highlight the rich variety of research and scholarship taking place on campus. The goal is to emphasize the value of research to the state, nation and world, and to offer students opportunities to discover and engage in research.

University Research Week is a part of Carolina’s new Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP). Many Carolina faculty — in the natural sciences, fine arts and humanities, social sciences and global programs —will be dedicating a part of their class time this week to talk about their research.

Undergraduate student research posters will be on display in the Carolina Union and Sonja Haynes Stone Center throughout the week. Student research groups will also staff information tables in the Pit.

Tours of the Murray Hall and Kenan Science Library Research Hub’s BeAM makerspaces will be conducted at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Thursday, March 30.

In addition, on Tuesday, March 28, Janet Browne, Aramont Professor of the History of Science at Harvard University, will deliver the Polanyi Lecture in the History and Philosophy of Natural Science. Browne is most widely known for her scholarly work on Charles Darwin, which includes an award-winning two-volume biography that integrated Darwin’s science with his life and times.  “Rethinking the Darwinian Revolution” is at 5:30 p.m. in Mandela Auditorium in the FedEx Global Education Center.

University Research Week will be celebrated every semester under the five-year QEP initiative, said the event’s coordinator, Troy Blackburn, interim associate dean for undergraduate research in the College of Arts & Sciences. The goal is for students to learn about research opportunities on campus and be inspired to launch their own research endeavors. He hopes it will become a permanent twice yearly event.


Watch a video of Louise Toppin, chair of the music department, discuss her scholarship on African American concert repertoire and Kathleen Harris, sociology professor and Carolina Population Center Faculty Fellow, discuss Add Health, the largest study on adolescent health that also looks at the social and biological determinants on health and health behavior.

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