Enhancing Undergraduate Research Experiences and Creative Activities

E.U.R.E.C.A. - Enhancing Undergraduate Research Experiences and Creative Activities

“The ecology of the university depends on a deep and abiding understanding that inquiry, investigation, and discovery are the heart of the enterprise…Everyone at a university should be a discoverer, a learner. That shared mission binds together all that happens on a campus.”

-- Boyer Commission on Educating Undergraduates in a Research University, 1998

Sam Houston State University recognizes the value of undergraduate scholarship—both for our students and our faculty members. The term “scholarship” is meant in the largest possible sense, embracing all disciplines; at the same time, it is shorthand for a much broader world that encompasses all forms of creative activity, scholarship, application and discovery.

It includes:

  • research in the traditional sense (such as a team of scientists working in a laboratory or field setting)
  • scholarly works in the humanities and social sciences and
  • creative activities engaged in by artists and performers

The Center for Enhancing Undergraduate Research Experiences and Creative Activities or EURECA, for short, is, of course, a play on “eureka” an ancient Greek word meaning “I have found it,” and it refers to the common human experience of suddenly understanding a previously incomprehensible phenomenon: it is the famous “Aha! Moment”.

Whether in a biochemistry lab investigating the metabolism of hormones, at a desk with paper, pencil and computer searching for that elusive concept that explains a mathematical phenomenon, in an art museum analyzing the techniques used in a 200-year old painting, in a library exploring the intricacies of the civil rights movement, or in the studio choreographing the finale for a new theater production, all disciplines have “aha moments”.

No matter what your major, SHSU provides many opportunities to participate in faculty-mentored projects specific to your area of study and we encourage you to begin actively engaging in research and creative activities and experiencing your own EURECA moments as early as possible in your academic career.