UMF holds annual research and creative project Symposium, April 27

FARMINGTON, ME (April 21, 2016)—University of Maine at Farmington celebrates its annual Michael D. Wilson Symposium on Wednesday, April 27. This daylong showcase features the research projects and creative works of the 2015-16 Michael D. Wilson Scholars and Fellows, senior artists and students from academic interests across UMF. It begins at 9 a.m. at venues throughout campus and is free and open to the public.

“This beloved UMF tradition is the product of hard work, inventiveness, financial support and deep commitment,” said Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president. “It’s no surprise that many members of the UMF community count Symposium Day as their favorite and most uplifting time of the year.”

This year’s Michael D. Wilson Research Scholars and Fellows include one full-year fellow and 21 single-semester scholars. The competitive Wilson Research Program helps top UMF student scholars—supported one-on-one by faculty mentors—pursue original, high-level undergraduate research projects. The program has been providing support for research, scholarship and creative projects at UMF since 2006. Some of this year’s research includes: bacteria resistance in dental health issues, soil remediation of herbicides and the origin of garnets from Cape Cod Hill granite.

Every year, UMF’s Symposium brings together hundreds of students in collaboration with their faculty mentors. Students are actively engaged through the academic year in the process of project creation and development and in-depth research of their work, which is then exhibited at Symposium in the form of papers, oral and poster presentations, original student readings, art gallery exhibits and performances. This year’s presentations include:


  • Avenues to Improve Opiate Abuse Prevention Efforts in Maine
  • The Impacts of Composting on Local Ecology
  • A Study of Poverty through a Photojournalist’s Perspective
  • The NCAA’s Exploitation of Student Athletes
  • Impacts of Climate Change on Maine’s Lobster Industry
  • The Power of Breaking a Sweat


The 2016 Symposium is preceded by the University’s festive Arts Week that runs from April 21–27. This rich collection of creative events by UMF students pulls together the arts from every corner of campus and celebrates the creative spirit of the UMF community.

Symposium also provides a wonderful coming together for exceptional events. This year’s events include the “Last Lecture” of Cathryn Wimett, professor of Literacy Education, who will discuss her 46 years as an educator and the  “Stranger in a Strange Land” reading by UMF 2014-15 Trustee Professor Patricia O’Donnell.

A special ceremony will take place at 4 p.m., April 26, naming the University’s Education Center as the “Theodora J. Kalikow Education Center.” Prior to the April 26 ceremony, tours of the building—UMF’s first showcase for energy-efficiency—will take place, beginning at 3 p.m. An open-to-the-public reception will be held at the North Dining Hall in the Olsen Student Center immediately following the ceremony.

The Michael D. Wilson Symposium is organized by the UMF Culture Committee. A full schedule of Michael D. Wilson Symposium and ARTS Nights events can be found at

More on University of Maine at Farmington

A nationally-recognized public liberal arts college, UMF enjoys a 150-year tradition of providing a quality academic experience combined with the personal attention and close student / faculty collaboration that help prepare all students to be successful. Rooted in a tradition of teacher preparation, UMF offers top quality programs in the arts and sciences, teacher preparation, and business and pre-professional studies. UMF is located in the heart of Maine’s four-season outdoor recreational region and is a welcoming, close-knit academic community that prepares students for engaged citizenship, enriching professional careers and an enduring love of learning.

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Media Contact: Paul Stancioff, UMF associate professor of physics, at 207-778-7371, or