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Each year Bournemouth University hosts SURE – Showcasing Undergraduate Research Excellence – a conference designed for undergraduates to share their research.  In 2016, Rosie Lumley, a nutrition student from the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences was awarded the Research Excellence prize for her poster demonstrating the signs of malnutrition in older people.  Below she shares her experiences and explains why she hopes to take part in BCUR.

I was encouraged to apply by my supervisor, Dr Fotini Tsofliou, who explained what SURE was and persuaded me that my research was worth of entering.  I was a bit unsure about it and was very surprised that my abstract was accepted.

During my placement year, I worked for Dorset County Council as part of their ‘Partnership for Older People Programme’ (POPP).  One of their roles is to raise awareness of malnutrition in people aged over 65 living the community.  To support this, they wanted a poster designed that could be downloaded from their website.

I researched the problem, looked at some online poster examples and went to my local surgery to see what sort of posters were out there and what caught my eye. I was really taken with the one about prostate cancer. I sketched a few ideas and together with my sister, Jemima Lumley, who used to be a graphic designer, put together the poster.  The finished poster can be downloaded from Dorset County Council’s website.

For SURE, I used the malnutrition poster as the central image and created a poster presentation about how and why we came up with it.  I was surprised and delighted when I was awarded the Research Excellence award!  My prize was a full-fee scholarship to study a Masters at BU, which I’m now undertaking – it’s something I could never have achieved without SURE.

I’d really recommend taking part in an undergraduate research conference.  As well as being a chance to get your research recognised, it’s also a really interesting day out.  The diversity of research being presented was fascinating and I got to meet some really interesting students – I never knew BU had such a breadth of courses on offer or so many creative students!

I’m hoping to enter the British Conference of Undergraduate Research this year, if I can, but whether I enter or not, I will definitely be going along just to have a good look at all the research being presented.

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