Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity (URCA)

URCAUndergraduate Research and Creative Activity (URCA) was established in 2009 by Dean Dawn Weber to support the scholarly work of students in the College of Arts and Sciences at Ashland University.  URCA is involved in promoting collaboration between faculty and students in projects that go beyond the walls of the classroom.

URCA's banner event is the annual URCA Symposium, held each spring.  The Symposium provides Ashland University students from across the College of Arts and Sciences a forum to share their work with peers, professors, and members of the community.  The Symposium showcases the wide range of scholarly experiences available in the College, as participants present projects from the fine arts, the humanites, the social sciences, and the natural sciences.

Stay informed on the latest research by following the URCA Blog and read a sampling of URCA student success stories below.

Comparing Extraction and Selection Algorithms in Pattern Recognition

Paul Pernici at Posters on the HillComputer Science and Mathematics major Paul Pernici (Dr. Paul Cao, advisor) was invited to present his pattern recognition research at 2015 Posters on the Hill. As described in his abstract for the 2015 URCA Symposium, "Pattern recognition is the science of discovering the inherent properties of large sets of data.... A large scale simulation was carried out which showed that feature extraction algorithms provide better accuracy and robustness, though they tend to involve more calculations." Read More...

Student Examines Toxicity of Jimsonweed

Cassie NixCassie has been actively involved in undergraduate research since her sophomore year.  For her continuing work on a project examining the toxicity of Jimsonweed (Datura stramonium), Cassie recently received a $350 research grant from the Tri-Beta National Biological Honors Society. Jimsonweed is a highly poisonous invasive plant in Ohio that can become incorporated into hay and other livestock feed as well as compost piles.  --Read More

Chemistry Professors and Students Find Lead in Cookware

Lead potsAshland University students in a Quantitative Analysis Chemistry class working with two Ashland University professors have discovered very low amounts of lead in pots that are being distributed throughout Cameroon. - Read More