April 13, 2010

Research takes center stage at ‘town meeting’

by Tim Crosby

CARBONDALE, Ill -- An annual gathering highlighting research at Southern Illinois University Carbondale is set for next week and will feature a keynote address by the University’s chancellor-designate and a news conference with representatives from the Chinese Consulate-General’s office.

The seventh annual Research Town Meeting is set for Monday, April 19, at the Student Center. The event begins at 12:30 p.m. and runs through 4:30, with a variety of activities scheduled throughout the afternoon.

Rita Cheng, chancellor-designate, who will assume that position in June, will deliver the event’s keynote address at 12:30 p.m., following introductory remarks by John A. Koropchak, vice chancellor for research and dean of the graduate school.

Media Advisory

Reporters, photographers and camera crews are welcome to cover the Research Town Meeting and a news conference scheduled for 2:30 p.m. in the Student Center’s Mississippi Room. Members of the Chinese Consulate-General’s office in Chicago will be on hand, as well as SIUC Chancellor Samuel Goldman and Shing-Chung “Max” Yen, director of the Materials Technology Center at SIUC, to discuss an ongoing cooperative effort to recruit and educate Chinese students at SIUC. For more information, contact Yen at 618/536-7525.

Koropchak said the event is an annual opportunity to showcase to the campus and local community the cutting-edge research, scholarly and creative activities, as well as the economic development conducted by faculty, staff and students -- graduate and undergraduate -- at SIUC.

“We are also thrilled that Chancellor-designate Rita Cheng will give the keynote lecture on her perspectives of research at SIUC,” Koropchak said.

Other special guests slated to attend include SIU Board of Trustees member Frank William “Bill” Bonan II and local community college presidents. Also, members of the Chinese Consulate staff from Chicago including Maoming Chu, deputy consul-general; Jianye Cao, consul director, science and technology office; and Xuqin Li, consul for science and technology, will attend and participate in a news conference focused on continued cooperation between China and SIUC.

“So this event not only gives the researchers opportunities to network with each other, but also to discuss their work with community representatives and these dignitaries,” Koropchak said.

The event highlights SIUC’s research and creative projects, which make up a crucial portion of the University's mission. Organizers will set up information tables where various units will highlight their projects. Hundreds of people attend the annual event.

The Research Town Meeting also allows faculty and students across campus to learn how their colleagues outside their units are conducting research and to look for opportunities for cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Organizers this year will introduce a visual arts forum aimed at displaying research results via digital media in an environment that is more conducive to viewing and listening, officials said. The presentations will include digitized images of artworks such as paintings, photographs, architectural renderings and set designs. Organizers also plan to show clips from research-related films, videos and animation.

The Visual Arts Forum runs 2-4:30 p.m. in the Fourth Floor Video Lounge at the Student Center.

Faculty, students, colleges and centers will display posters and interactive exhibits that explain research projects and will be on hand to answer questions and discuss their findings. The poster session, research demonstrations and exhibits run 1-4:30 p.m. in the Student Center ballrooms, J.W. Corker Lounge and International Lounge East.

Breakout sessions will provide valuable information to researchers looking for funding, fellowships or more understanding on technology transfer and research conduct.

Here is a schedule of the breakout sessions:

1 p.m. -- National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program; Illinois Room

2 p.m. -- Responsible Conduct of Research and Compliance; Ohio Room

3 p.m. -- Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer at SIUC; Illinois Room

3 p.m. -- Insight into National Science Foundation Educational Programs; Ohio Room

4 p.m. -- Undergraduate Research Programs, Illinois Room

4 p.m. -- Funding Opportunities for Graduate Students, Ohio Room