By Morgan Clark, Staff Reporter
This year’s Symposium Day hosted a wide variety of activities, events and presentations as students, faculty and community members came out to celebrate the 2016 Symposium Day at UMF.
Projects ranged anywhere from yearlong research projects to poster sessions for Spring semester classes. Topics also spanned anywhere from politics to baseball, and a load of other issues.
Other events were happening around campus as well, such as the dedication of the Kalikow Education Center to former president Theodora Kalikow, which started the symposium events on Tuesday afternoon.
Alpha Lamda Delta (ALD) also sponsored a “Last Lecture” by Cathryn Wimett, a forty-six year veteran teacher. Last Lecture is an opportunity for a teacher to give one last lecture before leaving UMF.
“We chose Cathy Wimett because she was a retiring teacher that has touched a lot of students lives,” said Vincent Vannah, Vice President of ALD.
Vannah said this was the fifth year the event was held and there were about a hundred people in attendance.
“They can give a lecture about anything they want,” Vannah said, “but Cathy focused her lecture on students’ safety.”
Rose Miller, a junior political science major, presented her yearlong research project on opiate addiction, “Investigating Avenues to Improve Opiate Abuse Prevention Efforts in Maine.”
A participant in the Maine Policy Scholars Program, Miller received a scholarship and research funds to conduct the project.
“A big part of [the opiate issue] is prescription drugs,” she said. “My project focused on prevention.”
In addition to Symposium Day she also presented her project at UMO a few days later along with her fellow policy scholars. Miller was one of seven scholars; one selected from each University of Maine campus to represent their school.
At the conclusion of the program Miller and the other scholars used their research findings to create a policy memo to send to the governor or some other state government figure.
Miller chose to focus on youth programs for prevention. “What I found with school programs that just give students the facts are that they’re limited,” she said, “especially when they’re the only strategy.”
Among other suggestions, Miller recommends that the state continue to fund community prevention efforts and consider re-establishing more consistent funding for evidence based school programs.
Tucker Atwood began his yearlong research project as a Wilson Scholar after the spring semester last year.
“I decided on the topic mainly through common interests between me and my faculty advisor, Nic Koban,” said Atwood in an email interview. His research looked at various baseball lineups to tell which one would create the most runs. “Simulations ended up being our means of gathering data…” he said.
For his presentation Atwood showed various Major League Baseball team lineups. He used the lineups that they started, and the best lineup they could have used based on his simulations.
Overall Symposium day was packed with events and presentations from the UMF community. Students and faculty showed their support of each other as they attended the day’s festivities. Even the library was packed with those taking advantage of their day off from classes as the semester comes to a close.