Research being conducted by students in John Molson’s research-based graduate programs was on display this past November 14th. The 11th Annual Graduate Research Exposition (AGRE), which takes place in November each year, showcases the research-in-progress of students from the MSc and PhD departments. Event participants compete to present the most compelling poster and arguments on their particular area of exploration.
“The AGRE is a stimulating public forum that highlights the innovativeness, the scholarly qualities, and the practical significance of research at JMSB,” says Linda Dyer, Professor in the Department of Management, as well as co-coordinator for the exposition.
This year’s event began with a public viewing of the exposition posters in the atrium of the Molson Building from 1:00 to 5:30 pm, allowing the John Molson and wider Concordia community to discover what graduate students are uncovering in their work. The event is of particular interest to undergraduate students wondering what kind of research their graduate counterparts are conducting and whether they would be interested in pursuing graduate research themselves.
“I was able to showcase how my research contributes to the real business world, while gaining feedback and interacting with industry experts. There is no better way to promote the relationship between industry and academia, and to direct the focus of our research from basic to applicative!” (Karen Naaman, PhD candidate)
At 4:00pm, the judges began evaluating the posters on several criteria, including clarity, significance and aesthetic quality, as well as the students’ ability to present their work and answer questions about the findings and their implications. The 24 judges represent the Montreal business community, from CEOs, administrators and middle managers from large organizations to consultants, owner-managers from small and medium-sized enterprises in a variety of sectors, as well as Concordia alumni. Ultimately, the judges and any other observers vote for the poster they believe makes the most interesting and promising contribution.
Dominique Vincent, MBA ’95 and one of this year’s judges, was thrilled by the event: “An idea that is well thought out is an idea that can be easily explained! This competition is so valuable for students as it helps them gain focus while learning from outsiders who challenge their methodology and the pros and cons of the elements they may or may not have integrated. For me, it is a treat to attend as I get to meet interesting people, learn new things but most of all discover trends and areas of interests to the leaders of tomorrow.”
Participating researchers received a lot of support leading up to the event. Aside from the support of their research supervisors, participants attended preparatory workshops, offered by the John Molson Centre for Instructional Technology, on honing their presentation skills, as well as on graphic design and effective communication for their posters
“Preparing for and participating in the AGRE has been one of the best experiences of my life. It helped me improve my presentation skills and make valuable connections by giving me the opportunity to share my work and receive feedback from students, academics, employers, and the community.” (Sarah Rahimi, MSc Management candidate)