A University of Arkansas – Fort Smith alumnus and postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Georgia will serve as the guest speaker for the university’s Student Research Symposium to be held from 1-4:30 p.m. April 14 on the UAFS campus.


Dr. Douglas Leasure, a 2009 graduate of UAFS and current postdoctoral fellow in the Wenger Lab at the University of Georgia, will speak to students in the Breedlove Auditorium at 1 p.m. Leasure will stress the importance of research and how research he conducted in collaboration with UAFS faculty helped shape his career.


Leasure, who came to UAFS unsure of what he wanted to do with his life, found a passion for biology during an introductory course with Dr. Ragupathy Kannan, professor of biology. He majored in the field and conducted ornithological research with Kannan through a grant from the Arkansas Department of Higher Education, and his research culminated in an academic paper being published in a peer-reviewed journal.


After graduating from UAFS, Leasure earned a doctorate from the University of Arkansas – Fayetteville after earning the prestigious Doctoral Academy Fellowship. His doctoral thesis landed him the fellowship at the University of Georgia.


The symposium provides an opportunity for UAFS students to showcase their research to fellow students, faculty members, and the community. Students from various colleges across campus participate, and awards are given for the top research projects following the event.


Following Leasure’s presentation, students will present their research at the Pendergraft Health Sciences Center and the Boreham Library. Nearly 90 students will participate, and will give both oral and poster presentations.


UAFS day classes are dismissed on the day of the symposium, allowing faculty and students the opportunity to attend the symposium as well as faculty events that morning.


The Student Research Symposium, previously the Undergraduate Research Symposium, was renamed to reflect the university’s status as a master’s degree-granting institution.


For more information on the symposium, contact Dr. Brandon Hutchison, assistant professor of mathematics, at 479-788-7414 or Brandon.hutchison@uafs.edu.


About the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith

The University of Arkansas – Fort Smith is the premiere regional institution of Western Arkansas, connecting education with careers and serving as a driver of economic development and quality of place in the greater Fort Smith region. Through a small campus, dedicated professors, and the university’s unique bond with its community, students at UAFS are able to do more in the areas they are passionate about, both on- and off-campus, in a way that prepares them for post-graduate success. To find out how you can do more at UAFS, visit www.uafs.edu.


Article by John Post, Director of Public Information
Date Posted: 
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
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