February/March 2014
Capstone April 2013 Capstone October 2012 Howard University  
Research Day Highlights Student and Faculty Scholars
By Teyonna Ridgeway, senior, School of Communications; intern, University Communications

Senior Sheneese Thompson was so interested in research that addressed academic stumbling blocks for Black students, that she created an award-winning project for Research Day 2013.

The aspiring teacher and African-American studies major presented her project, “Black Aesthetics, Mass Media Messaging, and its Effect on Academic Achievement in African-American Youth,” and shared with faculty and staff her assessment on how the perceptions and definitions of beauty, social value, cultural meaning and self-image of African-American middle school students is impacted by images and stereotypes in select mass-marketed media.

“My research explored commonly overlooked variables that contribute to poor academic performance and risky behavior,” Thompson says. “I thought it was necessary to reexamine the excellence gap between the potential of our students and the documented outcomes produced by their standardized test scores.” “Research Day is about breaking down silos to bring people from different disciplines together.”
Last year, Thompson joined more than 300 faculty members and undergraduate and graduate students, who shared their research in several disciplines including biological sciences, physical sciences, social sciences, education, humanities, religion and creative arts.

The event, which is coordinated by the Office of Grants Management, will return on April 4, to celebrate the breadth of research currently underway at Howard. The event will begin at 8:30 a.m. in the Louis Stokes Health Sciences Library with opening remarks from Gary Harris, Ph.D., associate vice provost for research and graduate studies.

External judges, including representatives from federal agencies, will critique the oral and poster presentations in various categories and award prizes based on content and presentation.

Norman Anderson, Ph.D., chief executive officer of the American Psychological Association, will serve as the keynote speaker during the awards ceremony. He will discuss the importance of mentoring, career development and networking across disciplines. Anderson is known for his research and writing on health and behavior, and on racial/ethnic and economic health disparities.

“Research Day is a great opportunity to engage current and future researchers and to develop transdisciplinary collaborations,” says Nicole Retland, chair of Research Day 2014. “It is a venue for our students and faculty to discuss their research findings with other Howard University members, external visitors from various federal agencies, private industries and surrounding universities.”

Research centers at Howard University, including the Research Centers in Minority Institutions, Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences and the Center in Social Work, will also have an opportunity to showcase current projects. 

“Research Day is about breaking down silos to bring people from different disciplines together,” said Maya Shih, last year’s chair. “We want to foster a culture of interdisciplinary collaboration and, by doing so, we hope to encourage the enrichment of Howard University’s research enterprise.”

Norman Anderson, Ph.D.
Faculty and graduate students are invited to serve as moderators. If you are interested, please email hsresearch@howard.edu by March 7.
Visit huresearchday.com for more information.
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