Kinesiology undergraduates earn first prizes at UURAF

May 5, 2021

Two kinesiology undergraduate students were among those who received awards at the University Undergraduate Research and Arts Forum (UURAF).

For 23 years, Michigan State University has hosted UURAF for undergraduate students to showcase their research and scholarly activity. Held virtually in 2021 from April 15-19, the event featured asynchronous pre-recorded poster, oral and performance or showcase presentations from individuals and groups. All were mentored by faculty members and/or graduate students.

A view of IM Circle.
IM Circle, the home of the Department of Kinesiology.

“Undergraduate research is a wonderful opportunity open to all MSU students,” said Kristy Dumont, director of undergraduate student affairs. “The students and work represented at UURAF show the quality and breadth of research opportunities available at Michigan State University.”

More than 480 presentations were given across 30 subject areas—including education and kinesiology. Of those presentations, nearly 100 were recognized as exemplary and received First Prize honors. View all 2021 presentation abstracts (PDF download).

This year, the College of Education had two winners:

  • Kinesiology junior Ellen Brooks who, in a group with Kaylee Commet, Libby Fernau and music education student Kaitlin Gaynor, received a first-place prize in the Communications Arts and Sciences category for: “How Electronic Toys Impact the Quality of Parent Language Input Provided to Young Children with and without Autism.” Their advisors were Communication Arts and Sciences graduate student Mackenzie Sturman and Assistant Professor Courtney Venker.
  • Kinesiology junior Lila Drake-Flam and co-researcher Zoe Morley who received a first-place prize in the Kinesiology category for: “Gestational and Post-Gestational Diets in Mice with Controlled Exercise.” Their advisors were Department of Kinesiology Assistant Professor David Ferguson and doctoral student Eric Leszczynski.

UURAF awardees earn a monetary prize and were eligible to submit for the UURAF Grand Prize.

Learn more about UURAF

In 2020, UURAF was canceled due to the novel coronavirus. Nearly 1,000 undergraduate students registered for the event, representing 16 colleges across MSU. Learn more about their research (PDF download).

To learn even more, visit the Undergraduate Research website.