RISE Above Research Conference

Research-Conference-2014-10The 5th annual conference will be held April 19, 2018, from 2-8 pm.

Abstracts are due by April 2, 2018.

This conference is a culminating event for students who have been engaged in mentored research. Presentations will showcase the scholarly and creative research from all disciplines and majors. Both graduate and undergraduates are encouraged to attend and present. Any faculty-sponsored research project, proposal, or demonstration is welcome.

The complexity of global concerns continues to increase—whether in the form of truly global crises such as new diseases in need of cures or vaccines and philosophical dilemmas about our response to technology, or more local issues such as the impact of climate change on the Tennessee Valley or the ability to retain qualified teachers in a local county. Norman Wirzba, in his book Paradise of God, discusses the “webs of interdependence” that connect all things and people. For Wirzba, it isn’t enough to be good stewards, but we must also be innovative and creative to flourish others in life-giving and life-sustaining contexts. In order to explore how we might best accomplish this kind of sustainability, the 2018 Rise Above conference will focus on the theme of Sustainability: Difficult Problems, Distinct Voices, and Innovative Solutions.”

Students are encouraged to explore the concept of sustainability through the lens of their specific discipline and with the guidance of a faculty mentor. Professors are encouraged to take up the theme in their classes in anticipation of this theme.

Prizes will be offered for the 3 best papers fitting this theme.

2018 Conference Program

2018 Conference Abstracts

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who can present at the conference?

Any current or recently graduated Milligan student may present his or her research or creative projects as long as they have the sponsorship of a faculty mentor. Sponsorship just means that the faculty mentor agrees that the presentation is acceptable for this conference. Acceptable research may include 499 projects, COMP 211 projects, HIST and HUMN 490 projects and graduate research projects. Projects should be original and primarily the work of the student rather than faculty sponsor.

What types of presentation formats are acceptable?

Most any presentation format can be accommodated with enough notice, but the two main types of presentation formats are either oral or poster.

Most oral presentations will be held in classrooms and will be scheduled in 15-20 minute time slots. However, a longer time slot or different venue can be arranged, if you have a creative presentation.

There will be a poster presentation session where you will have an easel that can hold a 30 X 40 poster board. You will have 1 hour to stand by your poster and answer questions.

Is there any cost for presenting or attending?

No. There is no cost to present or attend the conference.

Are all presentations accepted?

If your research is sponsored by a faculty mentor, then we will accept the presentation.

Can a presentation have more than one presenter or co-author?

Yes, there are no limits on the number of co-presenters or faculty mentors listed on a project. However, no more than TWO presenters can give an oral presentation or stand by the poster. If a project is completed by a large group or by an entire class, you should consider breaking the project into sections and having two students assigned to present each section of the work. This situation is best presented in the poster session format.

Can I submit more than 1 paper or project to the conference?


Do I need to submit my entire paper to the conference?

No. You will only need to submit an abstract (500 word or less).

May I request a specific time slot or change my time once it is set?

No. Sorry, we are unable to accommodate requests.

May I change the title, abstract, or presentation format after I have already submitted my registration?

You could change the title and abstract, but I can’t guarantee that the change will be made to schedules or programs. Send your changes to

Your presentation will be grouped with presentations on similar topics based on what is in your abstract. Changes you make after the time slots are set will not result in a change to your allotted time or location. If you wish to change formats (oral vs. poster), that will depend on available space and time. There is no guarantee that change can be made, especially if it is requested less than a week before the conference.

May I withdraw my presentation after I have submitted it?

Submitting an abstract for presentation is a professional commitment. If you submit an abstract, you are agreeing to present it at the conference on that day. If you are, for reasons beyond your control, unable to attend, you should first try to get a colleague to present the paper for you. If you can not find someone to replace you, send an email to both your faculty mentor and to to inform us that you are unable to attend and are unable to find a replacement. We will inform the session chair that you will not be able to present.