Four Interior Design Seniors from UCO will Present Research on Global Challenges at International Conference in Coventry, England
by Riley Stokesberry
The World Congress on Undergraduate Research unites some of the world’s most talented undergraduate researchers to highlight their focus on significant challenges the global community is facing. A select number of students around the world are invited to present their research, discuss global issues and invent or reinforce international research partnerships.
The third WorldCUR will take place on April 3-6, 2023, at The University of Warwick in Coventry, England. “The World Congress on Undergraduate Research is an international effort to bring together the top student researchers from around the world to share their work,” said Michael Springer, Ph.D., professor of history and director of the Office of High-Impact Practices at Central. Alongside the WorldCUR, Warwick will be hosting the British Conference of Undergraduate Research on April 5-6, 2023. This will be the first occasion when a national conference of undergraduate research has been brought together with the World Congress in a joint event.
This year, the University of Central Oklahoma had fourteen submissions, from across four of UCO’s five colleges, twelve students were accepted with one being waitlisted. This was a substantial increase from the last WorldCur in 2019, where only 3 of 9 submissions were accepted. This growth supports the university’s continuous dedication to creativity and excellence in research and scholarly activities. Four of the twelve accepted submissions were Interior Design seniors from the College of Fine Arts and Design.
Valerie Settles, Director of the School of Design, is thrilled and delighted with the success of the interior design students saying, “We are very proud of our interior design seniors. The projects they will be presenting at WorldCUR are the culmination of a year of work to find and research a societal problem, followed by collecting data that helps inform the final design solution. These projects underscore the broad range of skills UCO interior design students develop and highlight the benefits they bring to the community as they move into professional practice.”
First, we have a senior from Norman, Oklahoma, Jonathan Quiver. Jonathan’s thesis covers a luxury resort destination designed to immerse its users in the restorative properties of water and communion with nature. This facility serves the rehabilitative needs of Olympic athletes and offers many treatments to aid in mental and physical recovery.
The next student representing UCO Interior Design is Micah Ballweber, a senior from Luther, Oklahoma. Micah’s thesis explores how abandoned malls can be adapted into mixed-use developments that will positively impact the surrounding area’s economic, social, and cultural standing and help improve sustainable reuse practices to create flourishing communities.
The next UCO interior design representative is senior Sarah Carter from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Carter’s thesis is about the design of a dialysis treatment center that offers hemodialysis treatment for kidney failure patients seeking essential care with a healthy dose of nature to improve the overall experience by enabling each patient to have a view of the great outdoors while remaining connected to the water source that is ancillary to the treatment process.
Finally, we have a senior from Minco, Oklahoma, Emme Douglas. Emme’s thesis focuses on how a church’s inclusive design can promote support for the guests, members, and the local community by addressing wayfinding, daylighting, paths of travel, flexibility, interactions, and community outreach programs and resources. The university is astonished by the success and dedication all university students have given to this conference.
Central encourages and supports research, creative and scholarly activities across campus to enhance critical thinking skills and provide hands-on experience for students entering the job market or advanced degree programs. The UCO Office of High Impact Practices coordinates and administers many opportunities for students to be involved, while supporting and encouraging student engagement in learning that requires effort, builds substantive relationships, and provides opportunities for meaningful feedback and reflection. For those participating on April 3-6, The College of Fine Arts and Design wishes you the best of luck!