University showcases academic excellence

John Brown University students of various ages, majors and academic passions will be able to represent each of the University’s divisions by showcasing their research in the 2014 Celebration of Academic Excellence next week. The Celebration of Academic Excellence provides select students with the distinct opportunity to present research from their past year of studies. Most of the students chosen to present have been nominated by faculty members and have reflected academic excellence in their respective programs.

Brad Gambill, associate professor of English and director of the 2014 Celebration of Academic Excellence, is most excited about seeing the passion behind the student’s work. He believes that this event is a testament to how influential it can be for a student to learn within a community such as the one at the University.

“Students prove again and again that they are capable of much more than they ever thought when they started these projects,” said Gambill. “We often see a form of transformation in these students. Behind each transformed student stands a faculty member who has encouraged and challenged his or her student. I am reminded of how great my colleagues are and what a great blessing it is to be part of such a community.”

This event is not only unique because it provides a platform for research presentation to undergraduates, but it also celebrates areas of study from every division in the University. Students will be presenting real-world business plans, renewable energy projects, scholarly papers, musical performances, films, and disaster shelters of their own design.

“So many interesting projects are happening here at JBU, and we hope the 2014 Celebration of Academic Excellence will give us a glimpse of the diversity,” Gambill said. “All of this is directly related to JBU’s mission, of course. Through our research and creative work, we are carrying out the cultural mandate–an important aspect of kingdom building. ”

These presentations also provide an opportunity for underclassmen at the University to see the kind of research they may be doing as upperclassmen.

Senior Faith Lemons will be presenting her research at the Celebration of Academic Excellence, and she is also looking forward to explaining her research to her peers and professors.

“It was a relief that I was was asked to present, and it was also a joy for the underclassmen to get to see what they get to do in the future,” Lemons said. “I think it’s a beautiful gathering of the different subjects represented at JBU, and we really get to show off what we have learned and what we have studied throughout the years.”

The Celebration of Academic Excellence will begin on Thursday, April 24 and will end on Saturday, April 26.