Undergraduate Research Symposium

Mississippi State University’s Spring 2021 Undergraduate Research Symposium will be held virtually April 8-9.

Please navigate to the Spring Undergraduate Research Symposium through the following link: symposium.foragerone.com/msus21urs.

Once our event is launched on April 8, you will be required to sign up (using the Sign Up button in the top right corner of the site), enter your email (netid@msstate.edu), and go through the single sign-on using university credentials. Once you are logged in, you may access the event through the same link as above or by navigating to the Discover page in the header and selecting Mississippi State Spring 2021 Undergraduate Research Symposium. For any issues, please send a message using the chat icon in the bottom right corner of the site or email support@foragerone.com and a representative will be able to help you.


About the Symposium

All undergraduate student researchers are invited to participate in the Undergraduate Research Symposium. This is open to all students engaged in faculty mentored research. Students are invited to submit a project in one of the following categories:

  • Arts and Humanities (Poster, Oral Presentation, or Performance/Demonstration)
  • Biological Sciences and Engineering (Poster only)
  • Physical Sciences and Engineering (Poster only)
  • Social Sciences (Poster only)

The Undergraduate Research Symposium is hosted by the Shackouls Honors College in collaboration the Center for Community-Engaged Learning (CCEL), the Office of the Provost & Executive Vice President, the Office of Research & Economic Development, the College of Arts & Sciences, the Department of Food Science, Nutrition, and Health Promotion, the Graduate School, Student Association, and in collaboration with undergraduate research programs funded by the National Science Foundation. Prizes for academic areas are being partially supported by Phi Kappa Phi. The Shackouls Honors College has provided summer research support to some of the students presenting with additional funding from Mississippi State University's Office of Research and Economic Development (ORED) and other university colleges.

In recognition of Mississippi State University's Carnegie Community Engagement Classification, the Undergraduate Research Symposium is pleased to continue to include the Community Engagement Research track in the spring symposium competition, sponsored by the Center for Community-Engaged Learning. There will also be separate competitions in Public Health Research, sponsored by the Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion, and a engineering award sponsored by Theta Tau.

In addition to the main symposium event, students also have the opportunity to enter to compete in the following competitions:


Community Engagement Research Track

Undergraduate students of all majors: Would you like to be recognized for your community engagement work and have a chance to win a $100 cash prize for your efforts?

You are encouraged to enter the Community Engagement Research Track for the Spring 2021 Undergraduate Research Symposium. For the engagement competition, each abstract will be peer-reviewed and participants will be notified if their proposals have been accepted. Student entries will be presented and judged during the symposium, with prizes awarded for the most outstanding submissions.

Link to CCEL Video

For the purpose of the undergraduate research symposium, community engagement is defined as an activity that has an impact on the ability of individuals, groups, or organizations—either public or private—to achieve their intellectual, economic, and/or social goals. Community engagement projects also include activities that contribute to the development of a defined community, governmental initiative, and/or society-at-large within or outside of Mississippi.

Examples of activities that would qualify include but are not limited to:

  • Class projects that provide benefits to specific individuals, groups, or organizations (e.g.., market research projects for an entrepreneur starting a new business; rebuilding the homes of victims of natural disasters; participating in efforts focused on environmental conservation).
  • Individual or student organization projects that improve opportunities for advancement and/or quality of life for members of the community (e.g.., counseling and training for underperforming elementary students; addressing needs of the disabled or elderly).
  • Local, regional, national, or international projects that promote intercultural understanding or community development (e.g.., field trips to assist members of a community to implement a new economic development initiative).

To be considered for entry into the Community Engagement Research Track as part of the symposium competition, indicate your interest on the submission form.

If you have questions about the Community Engagement Track, please contact Michelle Garraway at michelle.garraway@msstate.edu.

You can view past winning entries here.CCEL Logo


Public Health Research Competition

In celebration of National Public Health Week, the Public Health Research Competition component of the Undergraduate Research Symposium is designed to highlight the important work that undergraduate students at MSU are doing in public health.

Public health research can be any research related to promoting and protecting the health of people and communities (see the American Public Health Association for more information).

To be considered for entry into the Public Health Research Competition as part of the symposium, indicate your interest on the submission form and include a brief statement regarding the implications of your research for public health.

If you have any questions about the Public Health Research Competition, please contact Dr. Holli Seitz at hseitz@comm.msstate.edu.FSHP Logo


Theta Tau Tomorrow Builder Award

Theta Tau Professional Engineering Fraternity is a co-ed student organization that promotes service, professional development, and brotherhood. Our members are a diverse group from every major in the Bagley College of Engineering, and we strive to become the engineering leaders of the future. We are excited to support an individual in this year's research symposium to receive the Tomorrow Builder Award, which aims to recognize an engineering undergraduate student who uses their skills and research to help solve complex problems of critical importance to society.

Theta Tau members will view student projects during the Symposium that are eligible for the Tomorrow Builder Award and will listen to the research presentations and may ask the student presenter additional questions. The members will deliberate and select a student to receive the award based on their own award criteria.

Theta Tau Logo


Why Participate

Many undergraduates participate in faculty-guided research and creative activity throughout the year. MSU is fortunate to have many faculty that involve undergraduates in research and federally funded research programs. All undergraduates in every program of study, not just honors students, involved in research and creative works are invited and encouraged to participate in the symposium.

To help participants prepare, the Digital Media Center (DMC) at the Mitchell Memorial Library conducts a Conference Poster Design Workshops. Posters will be required to be submitted as a PDF through the online portal.

Participants will be provided weblinks to share their projects on their resumes and vita.

Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.