The journal will enhance a system-wide effort to increase undergraduate research projects, said Bassman, who has directed the honors program at ECU since 1997.
“Undergraduate research is becoming really important and what’s quite amazing is, given the job market and qualifications for graduate school, it is now expected for undergraduates to have done some research,” Bassman said.
The journal will be housed at ECU although it will solicit research projects and articles from students across the UNC system. Bassman hopes to have the first edition of the Undergraduate Research Journal published by January and anticipates that a dozen research or creative projects from students across the UNC system will be included in the inaugural edition.
In 2002, UNC President Molly Broad called for greater emphasis on undergraduate research and the UNC Undergraduate Research Consortium was formed.
ECU’s undergraduate research activity is already quite strong, Bassman said. In the past three years, East Carolina undergraduates have been encouraged to assist professors with their research. Two undergraduate research symposia have been held at ECU, featuring the work of hundreds of students. More than 88 honors students in the Spring 2005 semester received research stipends of $500 to assist ECU professors. These students presented their work at a campus-wide research symposium held last spring.
In November, undergraduates from 16 campuses will participate in a symposium the UNC-Consortium on Undergraduate Research in Raleigh. Bassman will submit his first call for papers at the symposium.
ECU News Bureau