Student Researchers Share Passions at Fall Research Symposium

Gustavus Adolphus College students and professors gathered for a collaborative event to highlight current and past Gustie research.
Posted on October 15th, 2021 by

Students presented research on a range of subjects at the Fall Research Symposium.

By Nicole Post ’25

On Friday, Oct. 1, Gustavus Adolphus College students from across disciplines gathered to share their research and creative projects at the Fall Research Symposium in the Nobel Hall of Science.

Subjects of interest included biology, chemistry, engineering, design, psychology, and sociology. This event “gives students from a variety of disciplines the opportunity to share their research,” said Hayley Russell, Director of Undergraduate Research.

“It’s a really great opportunity to get to hear students speak about their research, present it in a professional way, and get to be excited about all the hard work that they have done,” said biochemistry and molecular biology major Katie Lillemon ’24.

Students attended panels led by fellow Gusties.

Not only is the Fall Research Symposium informative, but it also allows students the opportunity to improve a number of professional skills. “Learning how to communicate their research to a broader audience is a huge takeaway. It also increases student’s confidence skills, and helps students better understand the research that they did,” said Russell.

Students presented to peers and faculty through posters and panels, where audience members were encouraged to ask questions in order to gain a better understanding of the student research.

Although many of the presented projects were completed wholly at Gustavus, a number of students were able to work with institutions all over the United States, including Cornell University and Emory University.

Much of the intercollegiate opportunity stems from Gustavus faculty connections. “My research advisor actually went to college with the folks at Cornell who are doing this other research, and so my connection is through them,” noted Lillemon, who presented her work on gene editing at the symposium. Additionally, when asked about her experience with this intercollegiate collaboration, she said that she and her research team are “going to continue this research during the year and hopefully future summers. We are hoping that we will be able to continue to collaborate with them because it has had some cool implications.”

The opportunity for research at Gustavus is both abundant and inclusive, and students are taking notice. “Our panel session was a group of all women doing their research,” said Lillemon, “so it is that ‘women in STEM’ bonding moment which is always so great to see, especially in such male-dominated fields.” Gusties from all areas are encouraged to get involved in research, scholarship, or creative projects.

As an event that impacts students in their professional development, the Fall Research Symposium will continue to make an appearance on the Hill for years to come, and Russell hopes that this event will inspire future generations of researchers.

“I hope that people and peers are really excited and inspired by all of the wonderful research that our students do.”

To learn more about research opportunities at Gustavus, visit the College’s research website.


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Luc Hatlestad


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