The National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) is the largest conference on undergraduate research in the country. Each year, approximately 4,000 undergraduates from all over the country present their scholarship as posters, oral presentations, performances, and works of art. It is a great opportunity for students to present their research and network with other undergraduate researchers.
Kennesaw State University was selected to host this conference through a national search process. Save the date! KSU will host this conference April 11-13, 2019.
NCUR 2019 Committees
This committee is responsible for coordinating the review of abstracts submitted by undergraduates around the country. Each abstract is reviewed by at least two faculty members from within the abstract's discipline. This committee will provide guidance and training on using the online abstract review system as well as how to provide constructive feedback to submitters.
AccommodationsThis committee is responsible for coordinating with area hotels to determine available rooms, negotiate room rates, and suggest requests of hotels. During the conference, this committee will provide information to the hotels about the conference (e.g., shuttle schedules). This committee will work closely with the Transportation committee to determine the best shuttle routes between hotels and campus.
Budget and FinanceThis committee will manage all financial matters regarding the budget, revenue, and expenses associated with hosting NCUR.
Diversity and InclusionThis committee will promote diversity and inclusion in the conference. For example, how might we recruit underrepresented students from both within and outside of our campus to submit abstracts? How might we partner with nearby colleges and universities to promote diversity in submissions?
Event PlanningThere are several student-centered events that occur as part of NCUR. For instance, on the Friday evening of the conference, the campus will host a "Big Event" for all attendees. A smaller event is often scheduled for the Thursday evening of the conference. In addition, KSU will organize several paid excursions for attendees who stay through Saturday afternoon/evening (such as trips to museums or nature hikes). The Event Planning Committee will organize all of these student events.
NCUR Oversight Committee (NOC) Meetings and ReceptionsThe NCUR Oversight Committee, or NOC, is a committee charged with overseeing the planning of the conference each year. It is composed of representatives from the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR). They meet in person twice per year at the university hosting NCUR. In October of 2018 and April of 2019, they will meet at KSU. In addition, a reception for the NOC is planned during the conference. This committee will coordinate the logistics associated with both the October and April meetings and the reception.
NCUR 2019 Final ReportAt the conclusion of the conference, KSU will write a final report, which will include committee reports, statistics about the conference, evaluation data, and other information. This committee will be responsible for developing, printing, and distributing this final report.
This committee will be responsible for ensuring that the campus is ready for the conference. For example:
- Signage: This committee will be responsible for preparing and printing signs for the conference (such as directions to buildings/sessions, registration signage, etc.).
- On-Site Check-In: This committee will be responsible for coordinating the on-site registration and check-in process.
- On-Site Entertainment: Many host institutions provide entertainment for breaks in the conference, such as music, games on the Campus Green, etc. This committee will be responsible for organizing entertainment options.
- Accessibility: Attendees will be asked about accessibility needs during the online registration process; this committee will provide services on-site as needed.
- Sustainability: KSU is committed to sustainability in all aspects of the conference, such as providing refillable water bottles, providing recycling and composting options, reducing waste associated with meals, etc.
NCUR consists of several different types of presentations, which will be coordinated by this committee:
- Plenary Sessions: There are typically three plenary speakers at NCUR (one each day). This committee will be responsible for selecting the plenary speakers and managing the logistics associated with plenaries.
- Poster Sessions: This committee will schedule the poster presentations from the approved abstracts, develop a floor plan with Events for the poster kiosks, and work with the On-Site Logistics committee to ensure that there is adequate signage, the space is accessible, etc.
- Oral Sessions: This committee will work with the registrar to determine how many rooms will be needed, which buildings we will use on campus, and how to accommodate KSU faculty who cannot redirect their classes to the conference. Oral presentations are organized into groups of three according to discipline or topic area; then, each of these sessions is assigned a date, room, and session time. This committee will work with the Volunteer committee to ensure that there are students to serve as hallway monitors/technology runners and faculty to serve as moderators. This committee will work with the Technology committee to verify that each classroom has the appropriate technology. This committee will work with the On-Site Logistics committee to ensure that there is adequate signage (e.g., to announce use of classrooms during the conference, as courtesy reminders about entering classrooms only between sessions, to display schedules for each room’s presentations).
- Music Presentations: This committee will plan the music presentation spaces, handle equipment issues, and coordinate the sessions from the approved abstracts.
- Visual Arts Presentations: This committee will coordinate the exhibit areas and handle visual arts submissions from the approved abstracts.
- Performing Arts Presentations: This committee will coordinate the performance areas and performing arts sessions from the approved abstracts.
- Student Interest Workshops: Practical workshops for students, such as applying to graduate school, transitioning from college into a career, speed networking, etc., will be provided for attendees. This committee will generate workshop topics as well as coordinate the logistics of these workshops (e.g., speakers, room locations, descriptions for the program/website).
ProgramThe program includes the conference schedule each day, poster sessions, oral sessions, visual arts presentations, artistic performances, bios for plenary speakers, conference sponsors, details for the Big Event and excursions, shuttle routes and schedules, and campus maps. The program book is vetted by the NOC before printing. This committee is responsible for developing the program book.
Public Relations and Marketing
This committee will be responsible for promoting and advertising the conference both locally and nationally. For example, here are some of their responsibilities:
- Generate a logo for the conference in accordance with NCUR guidelines
- Send social media alerts well in advance of the conference
- Monitor social media before and during the conference
- Create phone and email for inquiries
- Generate awareness on campus, in the local community, and nationally
- Coordinate with the media
- Recruit corporate sponsors for the conference
- Recruit prominent members of the community to be involved in the conference (e.g., local politicians and business leaders)
Registrar/FacilitiesThis committee will be responsible for informing the campus about the use of classrooms during NCUR, rescheduling rooms as necessary for faculty who hold classes during the conference, assisting with room assignments for oral presentations, and preparing spaces (e.g., poster sessions, plenaries, registration) for the conference on campus.
RegistrationThis committee will monitor and answer questions about the online abstract submissions and registrations. They will update the website as new information becomes available and work closely with CUR National Office to use the CUR database.
Student Fairs/Open HousesThis committee will recruit area companies for a Career Fair, plan the Graduate and Professional Schools Fair, and organize Open Houses for interested departments and programs.
TechnologyThis committee will manage the technology needs for all aspects of the conference (wifi for attendees, live streaming for plenaries, technology in classrooms, technology for plenaries, etc.). They will ensure that up-to-date information is available on the conference website and develop a mobile app for the program to reduce the number of printed programs.
Transportation, Parking, and Safety
This committee is responsible for transportation, parking, and safety needs associated with the conference. For example, this committee will:
- Determine which transportation needs can be met by KSU transportation and select a contracted transportation company for all other NCUR transportation needs
- Coordinate with specific NCUR teams for special transportation needs (e.g., NOC meeting, excursions, open houses, evening events, airport shuttles)
- Develop maps, signage and other transportation and parking information
- Oversee parking and transportation operations during the conference
- Perform a risk assessment of all planned activities and associated locations to mitigate any and all hazards associated with public safety (security and pedestrian traffic), fire (response and evacuation), weather, and any biological, chemical or physical hazards
- Review all contracts for indemnification and liability related issues
This committee will coordinate all volunteers for the conference. CUR estimates that a minimum of 400 volunteers are needed in total, and these individuals should be visible through bright t-shirts, name tags, etc. Student volunteers will be needed to staff informational tables on-site during the conference, run registration tables, help lost students find their sessions, etc. Faculty/staff volunteers will be needed to moderate oral presentation sessions (introduce each speaker, keep time).Tasks for this committee include the following:
- Coordinate volunteer sign-up portal
- Train all volunteers
- Ensure all appropriate tasks for the conference are covered by volunteers