University Library News
Georgia State University

2010 Undergraduate Research Award Winners Announced


Four Georgia State University students have received recognition and several hundred dollars in rewards for writing outstanding class papers last year. The Georgia State University Library’s Undergraduate Research Awards recognize undergraduates who demonstrate skill and creativity in the application of library information resources for research papers/projects completed in fulfillment of a course requirement. A panel of Georgia State teaching and library faculty judges each submission. Participants can receive $600 or $400 prizes for winning, or $250 as a runner-up in the two categories of review.

The 2010 winner for the 1000/2000 level award is Austin Thomas Rowe. His paper, Media’s Portrayal of Homosexuality as a Reflection of Cultural Acceptance, was selected as the winner of the award for its use of a variety of types of sources and its engagement with various theoretical frameworks.  The paper was beautifully researched, reflecting a critical engagement with the selected resources and a skillful integration of multiple sources with Mr. Rowe’s thesis.  Additionally, the paper demonstrates a clear and elegant writing style. Mr. Rowe’s paper was for English 1103 Advanced English Composition (Honors), taught by Melanie McDonald.

The 2010 runner up for the 1000/2000 level category is Gregory Taylor Brooks.  His paper, Global Warming Mitigation Technologies, was selected as the runner-up for the award for its depth of research, the quality of chosen sources, and the critical engagement with a variety of sources.  This was clearly a thoroughly written paper, which demonstrated an admirable ability to render technical arguments in understandable prose. Mr. Brooks wrote this paper in Dr. Russel White’s Astronomy 1010H Astronomy of the Solar System (Honors).

For the 3000/4000 level category, the 2010 winner was Michelle Lacoss. Her paper, “The Olympic Class: The Politics Behind the 1996 Atlanta Centennial Olympic Games.” Ms. Lacoss successfully synthesized a wide variety of primary and secondary sources to construct a very persuasive argument. The judges were particularly impressed with her reflective essay, which was very thoughtful in its analysis of the evolution of her research project. Ms. Lacoss’ wrote her paper for History 4990 Historical Research with Dr. Larry Youngs.

The 3000/4000 level runner-up for 2010 was Kelly Walko for her paper “Inadequacy in the Commonwealth.” Ms. Walko’s extensive use of library resources helped her to make a very thoughtful analysis of difficult legal concepts.  Her research paper and her reflective essay represent a high level of undergraduate research. Ms. Walko’s paper was written for Political Science 4130 American Constitutional Law, with Dr. Robert Howard.

Each of these students will present their papers on Wednesday, March 24, 2010 at the Undergraduate Research Conference from 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. in Room 230 of University Center.  In addition, the University Library is making all of their papers available electronically at the Digital Archive at Georgia State University. Current undergraduates should look for submission information later in the year for the 2011 Undergraduate Research Awards!