Research Highlights / Full Story

The week also included a number of workshops and lectures on topics ranging from graduate advising to mentoring to thesis preparation.

The symposium drew participation from more than 100 graduate students across the university. Master's level students from the University of Rochester, Cornell, and the College at Brockport also participated. Awards were given for best poster and oral presentation.

"The annual Graduate Research Symposium is one of the ways we are pushing to create a graduate culture here at RIT," said Hector Flores, dean of RIT's Graduate Studies. "The university needs to build a stronger graduate culture that goes well beyond each of RIT's individual colleges. When we start building bridges between the colleges the students and faculty engaged in graduate scholarship will feel more connected."

As part of this year's symposium, the Office of Graduate Studies created RIT Doctoral Dissertation Awards.

Matt Ganter, a sustainability doctoral student, and Ray Ptucha, a computing and information sciences doctoral candidate, were this year's recipients. Each received a $500 award. Ganter's dissertation focuses on carbon nanotube enhanced electrodes to improve electrochemical performance while investigating the end-of-life options for recycling nanomateri- als from lithium ion batteries. Ptucha's research is on the development of new mathematical techniques to help computers better recognize and interpret human faces and human gestures.

Criteria for the award included quality of the research and writing, impact of the dissertation as measured by peer-reviewed publications, conference papers, and awards.

More than a dozen selected works were on exhibit at the RIT Gallery as part of the complementary art exhibition, Convergence. Various mediums from 3D to 2D artwork to films were submitted. This year's jurors were metal sculptor and School for American Crafts artist-in-residence Albert Paley; R.Roger Remington, the Massimo and Lella Vignelli Distinguished Professor of Design; and Sarah Lentini, past president and CEO of the Arts and Cultural Council for Greater Rochester.

"Graduate students of any major are welcome to submit work for consideration, but the majority of the entries are typically from our MFA students," said Robin Cass, associate dean in the College of Imaging Arts and Sciences. "It's wonderful to see our graduate students in the creative fields given the recognition they deserve. The arts and design are such an important part of what makes the RIT graduate community balanced and vibrant."