Students Showcase Research Projects during ‘First-Year Symposium’

Published: November 24, 2014

Students Showcase Research Projects during ‘First-Year Symposium’

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Approximately 2,000 students in the First-Year Learning Communities Program (FYLCP) at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi presented their research projects during the “First-Year Symposium” held November 20-21 in the Island Hall Gym.

Student projects focused on the study of writing, language, literacies, and rhetoric presented in several different multimedia formats such as poster display boards and Power Point presentations. Participants utilized ethnographic research both in the community and on campus for their presentations. Topics included cell-based research related to leukemia, rave culture, sorority stigma, the social interactions of sharks, and norm-busting research.

“First-Year Symposium is a great opportunity for our first-year students to share their research with the campus community,” said Rita Sperry, Assistant Professor and First-Year Seminar Coordinator.  “This event gives their work a real-life audience, and the students get to serve as ‘experts’ on their chosen topics.”

Students were also on hand to answer questions on their projects, showing what they learned from their research.

“It feels so good to be presenting,” said Willie Linares, a nursing major whose project focused on communities found in massively multiplayer online games (MMOG). “This is the first time I’ve presented in front of so many people. I’ve been working on this project for almost two months to make it perfect. I definitely learned that hard work does pay off.”  

The University’s First-Year Learning Communities Program (FYLCP) is an innovative nationally-recognized program which helps students to make successful academic and social transitions from high school to the University. The program has been awarded a Texas Higher Education Star Award by the Texas Higher Education Board. The FYLCP was the only first-year student program to win a Star Award.  The University was also selected as one of 13 "Institutions of Excellence in the First College Year" by the Brevard College Policy Center on the First-Year of College.

“What impresses me most about the First Year program at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi is that it is based upon nationally-recognized, well-researched methods that have been specifically designed to ensure a meaningful, productive, and profound college experience for freshmen students,” said Dr. Melanie McMahon, Professional Assistant Professor, First Year Learning Communities Program. “We are genuinely at the forefront of educational innovation.”