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01/14/2011

Dimaculangan Appointed as Director of Office of Undergraduate Research

Quick Facts

 Dimaculangan now leads an Office of Undergraduate Research for student researchers and their mentors.
 Establishing a university-wide office was the next step in increasing the presence and prominence of undergraduate research across the campus, according to academic officials.

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Dwigth Dimaculangan
ROCK HILL, S.C. - Biology Professor Dwight Dimaculangan assumed new duties this month as his job as director of undergraduate research for the College of Arts and Sciences expanded to serve the whole university.

Dimaculangan now leads an Office of Undergraduate Research for student researchers and their mentors. In announcing the new position, Tom Moore, vice president for academic affairs, said Dimaculangan has a proven record as undergraduate research director in the College of Arts and Sciences for the past eight years, and has been instrumental in the university’s progress toward “institutionalizing” undergraduate research throughout the university.

Establishing a university-wide office was the next step in increasing the presence and prominence of undergraduate research across the campus, according to Moore. The Office of Undergraduate Research is housed in University College and located in 219 Dinkins Hall.

Dimaculangan said he understands that the needs of students and faculty engaged in research can vary dramatically among the various disciplines. He plans to create a new website and form an Undergraduate Research Advisory Committee that includes faculty representatives from each of the colleges. The full committee may only meet a few times each year to discuss how to improve the undergraduate research program, but he anticipates many members of the committee will work with him throughout the year on subcommittees to tackle specific initiatives.

Dimaculangan will remain as director of undergraduate research for the College of Arts and Sciences for a few more months, and he will work with students, faculty and a committee to prepare the ninth “Undergraduate Scholarship in the College of Arts and Sciences Book of Abstracts” and to organize the Undergraduate Research Celebration held at the end of spring semester.

Dimaculangan, who will continue to teach biology classes, also will begin preparations for Winthrop to host the Big South Undergraduate Research Symposium (BigSURS) in the spring of 2012. BigSURS is a meeting started by the schools in the Big South Conference to create more opportunities for undergraduates to present their work at off- campus venues.

Winthrop’s undergraduate research efforts to date are impressive, Dimaculangan said. “I am most impressed with the dedication and effort of our faculty mentors,” he said. “The quality and diversity of the scholarship that is done by undergraduates at Winthrop is notable.”

The annual Book of Abstracts is being highlighted in a new book that is being published by the Council on Undergraduate Research called “Advancing Undergraduate Research: Marketing, Communications, and Fundraising.” Dimaculangan also made a presentation about undergraduate research at a November meeting of the Association of American Colleges and Universities and was recently contacted by a university in Georgia that plans to send a team of faculty and administrators to campus.

“Winthrop is taking a significant step forward in its efforts to provide students with transformative experiences that will prepare them for the future, since undergraduate research is recognized as one of the five ‘High-Impact Practices’ in higher education that promotes student learning and development,” Dimaculangan said.

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