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The Best in Undergraduate Research

CSU hosts undergraduate research showcase, Sept. 6

Muon Detector

Constructing devices that can detect sub atomic particles raining down on Earth. Synthesizing and characterizing novel nanoporous materials that could have applications in a variety of fields. Investigating the impact negative stereotypes of strong black women have on mental health. These diverse and impactful efforts are just some of the innovative research projects that were undertaken by undergraduate students and their faculty mentors at Cleveland State University this summer.

In an effort to highlight the quality and benefits of undergraduate scholarship on campus, CSU’s Office of Research will host its annual student research showcase and poster session September 6. Students and faculty will discuss project results and demonstrate various experiments and devices developed through the initiative. The event is free and open to the public and will be held from 11am - 2pm in the Student Center Atrium on campus.

Mechanical engineering student Nicholas Knyszek worked with Physics Professor Andrew Resnick to construct CosmicWatch muon detectors which can measure the amount of muons in the atmosphere. The subatomic particles, which are similar to an electron, are blasted towards Earth by our sun, supernovae and other astrophysical phenomena far beyond our Solar System. The project helps train students on detector design and utilization while also increasing our understanding of muons and their function.

“This effort is allowing Nick the opportunity to conduct a substantive project, apply classroom principles in a laboratory environment and make contributions to scientific discovery,” Resnick adds.

“Undergraduate research programs like this augment daily classroom teaching and learning with research skills and critical thinking that enhances our students’ learning experience and makes them more competitive in the job market,” notes Jerzy Sawicki, CSU’s Vice President for Research.

CSU’s Undergraduate Summer Research Award program provides funds for students to work with faculty mentors on impactful research during the summer. It seeks to foster an engaged environment that promotes a culture of student involvement in research and scholarship at the University. The program, sponsored by CSU’s Office of Research, funded 55 project in 6 colleges during the summer of 2018.