Special College Coffee opens SURF day activities

Research poster presentations and music by student groups Sweet Signatures, Twisted Measure and Rip_Chord highlighted a special College Coffee Tuesday, April 24. The event opened Student Undergraduate Research Forum (SURF) activities at Elon, which will continue throughout the day. Details...

More than 100 students will share their research findings with students, faculty and staff throughout the day. In addition to the poster session, students will make individual presentations at locations across campus. Click here to see the schedule of events for the day.

Sweet Signatures and Twisted Measure shared the stage on the terrace at the Center for the Arts Tuesday morning during College Coffee. Along the center’s main concourse, members of the campus community saw student research posters from a multitude of academic disciplines, including psychology, biology, mathematics and engineering.

Sophomore Patrick Tweel’s poster presentation was titled “Designing the Stapler.” Under the guidance of faculty mentor Sirena Hargrove-Leak, assistant professor of engineering, Tweel interned with an engineer and industrial designer. He became interested in the design of staplers and whether or not alternative designs might be acceptable to users. Tweel did market research on staplers already on the market, getting feedback from office workers on three different models. He also developed three prototypes for new stapler designs and tested them in an office setting, querying workers on ergonomics and overall function.

Tweel says his research shows other models and makes of staplers might be able to find a niche in the market. More importantly, his experience opened his eyes to the world of research. “It really got me to thinking about the process of research,” said Tweel, a mechanical engineering major. “I learned a great deal about conducting reliable, scientific research.”

Seniors Caitlan Pyden and Emily Schmitt presented a poster titled “Relationships between Treadmill Running Performance and Preference and Tolerance of Exercise Intensity.” They studied whether or not people who enjoy running are able to maintain their exercise rate at a higher level and for longer periods of time than those who said they do not enjoy exercise. They found that people who said they did not enjoy exercise stayed on a treadmill for less time and at a less strenuous level. Pyden and Schmitt also introduced a variable, testing subjects to see if they performed better with some type of distraction, such as music or a television program. They presented their research at the Southeastern Conference for the American College of Sports Medicine in February in Charlotte.

SURF is part of CELEBRATE!, a week-long event to highlight student work at Elon. In addition to SURF, the week includes the Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK) awards ceremony on Thursday, music recitals and performances, readings of student works and film screenings. CELEBRATE! also includes concerts, plays, dances, art exhibitions and poetry.