UTEP doctoral students show their research

University of Texas at El Paso

More than 50 doctoral students at the University of Texas at El Paso on Friday will present their research and preliminary findings during the first Doctoral Research Exposition.

Students from 15 doctoral programs will give oral and visual presentations at 9 a.m. Nov. 11 at the Tomás Rivera Conference Center (Union Building East) on the UTEP campus. Jorge Villalobos, Ph.D., director of Facilities Services at UTEP and a former recipient of the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship, will speak to students during a luncheon to encourage them to continue their pursuit of a doctoral degree.

Presentations will be evaluated and participants will receive feedback from faculty specializing in each discipline. Prizes will be given to the best presentations.

The expo is an opportunity for students to gain confidence, explain their research to different audiences and disseminate their results, said Benjamin Flores, Ph.D., professor and acting dean of UTEP’s Graduate School. The school put the event together with a grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

“UTEP has a long-standing tradition of organizing events where undergraduate and graduate students can present their research,” he said. “However, this is the first-ever research exposition exclusively dedicated to emerging doctoral student researchers.”

Among the research presentations are “Mujeres y La Noria,” a project that seeks to understand the personal, emotional and social changes undergone by women during the Bracero Program; and “Increased Vulnerability: Effects of Gender and Smoking on Alcohol Consumption and Alcohol-related Consequences,” a project that examines the effects of gender and smoking on alcohol use. Other research fields include biological sciences, chemistry, civil engineering, computational science, and electrical and computer engineering.

“This event is crucial for doctoral students who want to enhance their professional skills and receive constructive criticism from peer reviewers on their research methodology and preliminary findings,” Flores said. “For many participating students, the event will be an important milestone in their road to success. The next phase for these students is to advance their work and make plans to participate in national conferences where they can share their findings with their research communities.”

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