University Relations and Communications

Undergraduate Research and Creativity Symposium set for April 4

March 31, 2014



David Craig, Honors Program, 657-2908
Tim Urbaniak, City College, 247-3050
Carmen Price, University Relations, 657-2269


Two-year education presentations at City College from 10 a.m. to Noon; four-year student presentations at MSU Billings University campus from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.


MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Some of the most creative minds looking at the world’s biggest challenges are undergraduate students in Montana.


Dozens of Montana State University Billings students, as well as students from nine of the state’s two-year and tribal colleges, will showcase their research and creative works during an annual Research and Creativity Symposium on April 4.


Research event posterThis conference, free and open to the public, will place both two-year and four-year student work front and center. The works will be as diverse as the fields of study they represent, from computer technology and welding to those in physics, biology, chemistry and creative writing.


“Via their research projects and creative endeavors, our students are exploring the little-known, sharing in the creation knowledge and helping us to experience the world in new ways,” said Dr. David Craig, English professor and director of MSUB’s Honors Program. “We want to showcase and celebrate their achievements. The conference provides an opportunity to share the energy and excitement that come with discovery and creation.”


The one-day conference will begin at 10 a.m. at City College with its second annual “Student Research Day for Montana’s Two-Year Colleges”—the premiere event for two-year institutions and tribal colleges in Montana. The fair was hosted in its first year at Highlands College of Montana Tech in Butte.


"Montana's two-year and community colleges provide a great breadth of research opportunities for their students ranging from mapping ancient pictographs to conducting research regarding new state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing techniques,” said Deputy Commissioner of Two-Year Education John Cech. “We are proud of the incredible work our talented faculty and their students do every semester."


Following the event, there will be a Noon luncheon at City College for the student-participants. Keynote speaker Nathan Munn, M.D., from Helena College University of Montana will speak about the role of research within Montana’s two-year education curriculum.


City College faculty member Tim Urbaniak said the morning will showcase City College students as well as students from several other Montana two-year colleges who are exploring cutting-edge topics and technologies.


“Research and creativity isn’t just happening at four-year institutions,” Urbaniak said. “There is excellent work being developed by hands-on people at the grassroots who are exploring vast topics and technologies at two-year colleges."


At 2 p.m., Chancellor Rolf Groseth will kick-off the afternoon portion of the conference with opening remarks at MSUB’s four-year campus in the atrium between the Library and Liberal Arts Building.


Among the undergraduate presenters will be MSU Billings’ recent Goldwater Scholarship recipient, Elizabeth Mullins. Mullins will explain her research that investigates pathogenic fungi with the aim of better understanding the regulatory pathways that could aid in the development of targeted broad-spectrum, anti-fungal therapies. 


Poster presentations will be on display beginning at 2 p.m. Creative works including dance, poetry, art and creative writing will be presented from 2:45 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. Research presentations will commence at 3:15 p.m.


The symposium is presented by City College, the Montana State University’s University Honors Program, the Office of Grants and Sponsored Programs and a grant from the National Institute of Health’s MT-INBRE Program.


Research and Creativity Conference Schedule:

10 a.m.-Noon - City College: Poster/Project Presentations

12-1 p.m. - City College: Celebration Luncheon, Welcoming Remarks: Tim Urbaniak, Keynote Speaker: Nathan Munn, M.D.

2 p.m. - University Campus: Chancellor Rolf Groseth Opening Ceremony

2:45 p.m - University Campus: Creative Presentations I, Library, 231

3:45 p.m. - University Campus: Creative Presentations II, Library, 231 

3:15-4 p.m. - University Campus: Research Presentations, Liberal Arts Building, 205


PHOTO ABOVE: Event poster