April 7, 2005

Posters in the Rotunda: A Celebration of Undergraduate Research

Remarks by Ms. Amanda Lederer

I would like to thank everyone for coming today. I'm honored to have been selected to speak on behalf of the UW students involved in undergraduate research. I would like to give special thanks to Governor Jim Doyle and the legislators for their support of higher education, (and) to the UW System Board of Regents, UW System administrators, and the chancellors of all the campuses for their support of undergraduate research. I would also like give a special thank you to UW - Platteville Chancellor David Markee and my research advisor, Dr. Kristopher Wright.

As a sophomore at UWP, I was recommended by the UW-Platteville Biology Department, and selected, for a summer internship at the Great Lakes WATER Institute in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. For 12 weeks I was involved with charting the migration of an invasive fish and its impacts on macroinvertebrates in Green Bay. At the conclusion of this internship, I presented my project to the senior research scientists working at the WATER Institute, and have co-authored a written research paper that is pending publication at this time. I presented this project at the 2004 American Fisheries Society National Conference in Madison.

In the spring of 2004, UW-Platteville nominated me for a scholarship from a local chapter of Trout Unlimited. I worked during the summer with an Intern Advisor on the Blue River Restoration Project. This project looked at the immediate changes in river/riparian habitat, macroinvertebrate and fish communities due to restoration. In addition, I completed a formal presentation to Trout Unlimited and am currently working on written report. My findings on this study are being presented today.

Undergraduate research has been very important to me. It has not only opened many doors for me, but I have gained a better understanding of science through hands-on experience. My experiences with undergraduate research have given me the ability to determine if a career in science was the right choice for me. I have been able to meet and work with a variety of people ranging from senior research scientists to the common trout fisherman. My data has given them a platform for future studies and changes that may impact the environment.

As a graduating senior this May, I plan on continuing my research at the graduate level. Without my undergraduate research experiences I would not feel prepared to pursue this level of education. I encourage all of you, the students, to stay involved in any type research available. What you gain from your research is truly an awarding experience and one that I am happy to have experienced.