For more than 20 years, Clark University students have showcased their summer research and creative work during Fall Fest — an annual event dedicated to celebrating projects produced under the mentorship of the University’s distinguished faculty. This year, the event will happen in a new virtual format and under a new name: Winter Fest.
Beginning Feb. 5, students, faculty, and staff can sign into Moodle to view posters and artwork and watch oral presentations and panel discussions from 85 participating students. Like the on-campus, in-person event, attendees will be able to ask questions in the online format, which can be accessed at clarku.edu/winter-fest.
“We moved Fall Fest to the winter intersession and called it Winter Fest because our very atypical fall semester threw student progress on research into flux,” says Associate Provost and Dean of the College Betsy Huang. “Everyone felt that given the fact that we had this extended winter break, there would be more bandwidth for students to put together solid presentations. It’s also a great engagement opportunity for other students during break to come and see what their classmates are working on.”
Posters and presentations on display during Winter Fest will represent the wide range of academics at Clark — from political science research to studio art projects and beyond. Students will showcase 45 posters and 19 pre-recorded or live Zoom presentations during the event.
Huang commended participants for their resilience this year while recognizing how difficult it has been for many to persist during an incredibly challenging time. “We want to showcase projects that testify to the excellence of our students’ research and creativity, but at the same time, we are aware there were setbacks that were very difficult for some students to overcome,” she says. “We want to be equally mindful of projects that were not able to be completed and to acknowledge that work has been done there.”
Winter Fest is sponsored by the Office of the Dean of the College, led by Professor of Psychology James Córdova, and organized by Staff Coordinator Kerri Stearns of the Psychology Department, who played a critical role in making the event possible.
“I want to acknowledge Kerri’s hands-on, soup-to-nuts work and her spirit in wanting to mount this in spite of COVID and other challenges,” Huang says. “Our institutional acknowledgment of the great work being done by students and faculty is also being carried on by our staff.”