Festival Showcases Excellence Far & Wide

Published: April 04, 2013 | Read Time: 2 minutes

Southern Utah University will host its inaugural Festival of Excellence on Tuesday, April 9, bringing together the noteworthy research, artwork, poetry and scholarly explorations of SUU faculty, staff and students conducted over the past year.

“So many members of the SUU community travel around the globe, presenting unique research to people from India to Costa Rica, but their peers across the hall hear nothing about it,” said Provost Bradley J. Cook, who first envisioned such a concept for an academic showcase. “The Festival of Excellence will change that.”

Providing a stage for the prodigious scholarly work of Thunderbirds far and wide, the Festival of Excellence will allow the campus and local communities to glean from academic discussions around the world, and free of charge, at that.

To ensure students, faculty and staff are able to attend any and all presentations that pique their curiosities, classes will be canceled on Tuesday.

The festival will begin with a plenary session at 9 a.m. in the Centrum Arena, where faculty keynote Peter Sham, co-creator of the internationally acclaimed Lend Me a Tenor, the Musical, will present. This introductory session will also include President Michael T. Benson and Provost Cook; junior communication major Dallan Wright will serve as emcee.

The remaining portion of the academic conference will involve concurrent presentations, poster sessions and creative work demonstrations, organized into five sessions at various time and locations throughout the day, including up to 50 speakers each. With more than 200 presentations to choose from, there truly is something for everyone.

With students and faculty in side-by-side presentations, attendees will be educated on a myriad of topics, with just one guiding standard: all research has been completed by a member of the SUU community. Topics for the 200+ presentations vary greatly, a few examples of this range include:

  • Gabriel Ferreyra: Corruption & Drug Trafficking in the Mexican Federal Judiciary
  • RJ Corry: Essential Oils
  • Beau Kunzler: Nutrition Management for High School Wrestlers
  • Paul R. Larson: Utah's New Climate Map
  • Michael Barney: Fire Retardants may lead to Parkinson's Disease
  • Camille Thomas: The Emotional Intelligence of Coaches
  • Joy Sterrantino: Video Games in Academia
  • Michael Benson: SUU's ThunderBard Project

A full listing of presentation topics, times and locations is available online at suu.edu/excellence

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