Author:   Mike Ofsowitz  
Posted: 10/9/2009; 4:09:20 PM
Topic: Call for Participation, Scholars' Day
Msg #: 20 (top msg in thread)
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Applications for Scholars' Day 2017

Deadline for submission: March 3, 2017

The deadline has passed; thank you all who have submitted. We are no longer accepting applications.



Student Presentation Application Form (Deadline: Friday, March 3, 2017, 11:59pm)
Faculty/Staff Presentation Application Form (Deadline: Friday, March 3, 2017, 11:59pm)

Scholarship-eligible participants: An annotated bibliography is due by April 12, 2017 (11:59pm). See details.
If you have questions concerning your application, please contact Professor Michael Ofsowitz.

Scholars' Day Dates: Brighton - April 29, 2017 (Saturday)
Margot Lee Shatterly - May 3, 2017 (Wednesday)


Applicants: A member of the Scholars' Day committee should be notifying your "first presenter" (whoever was listed on the application form first) about receipt of your application. If you haven't heard from us by March 8, please contact either Professor Kumar for Engineering applicants or Professor Ofsowitz for all others.

Students, faculty, and staff at MCC are invited to submit proposals to showcase their work. We are looking for proposals from the entire spectrum of scholarly and creative work associated with the MCC community. Applications must be submitted electronically using one of the forms linked above ("APPLY NOW"). An application will require an MCC e-mail address, an abstract (see our abstract page for a description), and at least a tentative title. Student applications will also require a faculty sponsor (sponsors are not required to co-present). Applicants eligible for a scholarship must select a competitive scholarship award option to be considered. Please submit one application for each proposal. We look forward to your submissions, and hope to see you at the 2017 Scholars' Day.

From our FAQ:

What kind of work can get into Scholars' Day?
Scholars' Day is open to submissions from all disciplines, from the arts to the hard sciences. The common thread among presentation topics is scholarly research, which incorporates published literature. Projects suitable for Scholars' Day may include: analyses of existing works of art, literature, science, or technology; creations of new methods of doing something related to topics studied at MCC; or the actual collection and analysis of data pertaining to a research question. (These may be presented as posters, talks, or commentated performances.) Student presentations often originate as work done in class on term papers or projects; and although presentations targeted for Scholars' Day generally go somewhat above and beyond the expectations of the classroom, they might just be excellent works produced entirely as in-class projects. Presentations can also originate as independent work outside the confines of class requirements.

The work submitted as a Scholars' Day proposal need not be extraordinary. Although scholarship awards are given to a select few Scholars' Day presenters (generally for quality, complexity, originality, and skillful presenting), one needn't have an award-winning project to be accepted for presenting. Proposals should reflect the kind of work that generally goes into producing an "A" paper or project.

Faculty presentations are typically tangential to or completely independent of one's teaching, but they might also be analyses of pedagogical methods. We hope that faculty presentations (which are liberally accepted) strive for a level of scholarship that models the sort of inquiry or analysis one might expect at a conference of our community college peers, yet remain intelligible to our better students.

Advice for proposals:

Select a sponsor who understands your topic. You may have more than one sponsor, and we highly recommend choosing a sponsor or sponsors in the field(s) of your topic. In other words, if you wish to submit a proposal for a project in philosophy, do not rely on an engineering professor as your sponsor: seek out a philosophy professor. If your topic is about psychology, find a psychology professor to work with. Examining genetics? Your English professor is not your best choice: find someone in biology. If your project spans two different fields, have a sponsor from each, or at least consult with a professor from each.

Work with your sponsor. Proposals that aren't accepted for inclusion at Scholars' Day frequently turn out to be those that were submitted without consultation with the sponsor. Your professors are here to help you, and we're generally very impressed with how much they do to support and mold student projects into high quality submissions (and final products). Start early enough, too, so that you have a strong proposal by the submission deadline.

Narrow your focus. We often give student submissions a second chance if the proposal looks okay but not quite up to standards, and the most common problem we see is that the proposal is way too broad. You will be presenting for roughly 15 minutes. That is not enough time to solve major problems of the world. You should examine a specific case or part of a larger issue. The more precise and limited your topic is in breadth, the better it will be. For example, instead of proposing a report on "sources of greenhouse gases in North America, and how to reduce global climate change," try to examine the relative contribution of one source and estimates of how much it can be reduced by changes in behavior. The research you conduct on this narrower topic will almost guarantee that you'll have a level of expertise beyond anyone in your audience. And that's impressive.

Do your research. It is called "Scholars' Day" because we expect some significant scholarly work as part of your project. You should be well-informed about your topic, whether it's about an artistic method, a literary theme, a biological process, or a moment in history. As a general guideline (but not formal rule) your work should be consistent with the expectations of a 200-level class. And although you needn't be finished before you apply, you should be well-informed when you submit your application. If you need help with the research process, consider making an appointment with a librarian.

Write a coherent abstract. See our abstracts page for information about the required abstract, and consider consulting with a tutor in the Writing Center (11-208) to polish the writing.

If you have questions relating to the application process, contact Professor Ofsowitz at




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