Students eat pizza, discuss possible research projects

Katie Roupe

Freshman anthropology major Hannah Krumheuer and Emily Ingersoll, freshman visual journalism major, chat with Honors College Dean Larry Andrews about research. KATIE ROUPE | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: John Proppe

The aroma of pizza filled the Honors College library as students ate and chatted with faculty members yesterday during Pizza with the Profs.

“It’s a good way to meet professors, and since I don’t know what I want to do, it’s a good way for me to try to figure out what I want to do,” freshman exploratory major Rochelle O’Neil said. “I want to get involved in some sort of research project with a professor, but first I need to figure out what I’m going to major in.”

Becky Gares, honors coordinator of advising and public relations, said the Pizza with the Profs program, sponsored by the Honors College, is designed to connect students with faculty.

“We targeted freshmen to come to introduce the idea of grant research early to encourage them to think about research during their college careers,” Gares said.

About 30 students and 10 faculty members conversed in the relaxed atmosphere of the Honors College reception area and library. Representatives from the history, education, English, Pan-African, journalism and mass communication and computer science departments were present.

“It’s just great to meet a lot of different faculty members who we might have classes with in the future,” said Adrienne Goldberg, freshman art education major.

While the free pizza was a big draw for students, students received information about upcoming overseas research trips. Associate professor Anne Morrison talked to several students about a trip to Italy next spring for the education psychology class. Even for students not interested in the trip, she said Pizza with the Profs was a fun time for students to hang out with their professors.

“It’s important to network with other professors, just building the collegiate spirit,” Morrison said. “We have the brightest of the bright here, and this is a great way to help them cross the threshold from students to their professional careers.”

The students who attended were told they had to speak to at least one professor to encourage them to check out new programs and projects.

“Honors students have a lot of interests and doing research could pique their curiosity,” Honors College Dean Larry Andrews said. “We want them to learn what fun it is to do research or individual projects. It’s a challenge to get students to talk to faculty, but we had about the turnout we expected.”

Contact honors and international affairs reporter Katie Roupe at [email protected].