Summer Research Celebration

11th Annual Summer Research Celebration

Tuesday, October 3rd, 2023

Click here to view the program!

On Tuesday, October 3rd, Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) awardees presented their unique stories and accomplishments in the McConnell Library Ross Art Gallery. Presentations varied across a wide range of majors, including biology, music, social work, psychology, media studies, and many more. Cora Burt, a sophomore Art major, reflected on the importance of faculty in helping students successfully navigate the challenges of becoming a researcher. “As a student that intially never saw myself as a researcher, collaboration with my mentor, has not only given me guidance, but confidence in myself to try something exciting and unfamiliar.” Abbi Green, Executive Student Assistant in OURS, echoed Cora summarizing the impact of the student-faculty dynamic “It’s clear that faculty become important even outside of research to the students.”

Freshmen Political Science major, Jae Horst, shared her inspiration from the day “Seeing researchers that found passion and demonstrated depth in knowledge of their topics within several months gave me inspiration and confidence towards my own research projects in the future.”

Eni Szabad, a Physics major who researched gravitational waves, stated, “This experience was really helpful in not only having a great research experience under my belt, and also dealing with the frustrations and the realities of research, but it will [also] help me further in my career.”

Joe Wirgau, the Director of the Office of Undergraduate Research & Scholarship, summarized the importance of the event as “For eight hours, we heard students share the results of their funded grant proposals, explaining how they were able to navigate the amibiguity and challenges of creating new knowledge in a way that resonated with the general population at Radford University. Every one of them was able to demonstrate the critical thinking and communication skills most sought after by employers.” SURF proposals for next summer are due February 12th and information on submitting an application can be found at

Past Summer Research Celebration Programs