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William Nichols, Associate Dean
Marc Reyes, Assistant Director, Office of National Scholarships and Fellowships
Ashlie Swanson, Research Program Manager

In the absence of a Center for Undergraduate Research at Georgia State University (and the unlikeliness of establishing one any time soon), initiatives to support undergraduate research at GSU historically have been disjointed and disconnected. For many years, the Honors College at GSU has spearheaded and hosted the annual undergraduate research conference which is the largest and most visible event dedicated to undergraduate research on campus. However, this event was also somewhat distanced from other efforts to promote undergraduate research within the Honors College and was often misperceived as an event only for Honors students. In our presentation, we will outline the various levels of dialogue and the many debates, both internal and external, that led to the creation in Spring 2023 of the Undergraduate Research Council housed in the Honors College. We will discuss the needs that precipitated difficult conversations as well as opportunities that led to collaborations with other units across campus. Comprised of Honors College staff, librarians, and faculty associates of diverse disciplinary backgrounds from both the downtown and perimeter campuses, the Research Council has more closely connected the efforts to promote undergraduate research within the Honors College with initiatives across campus. The success of the Research Council is due in no small part to the conversations and dialogue that built a vision of undergraduate research as a shared enterprise. This presentation will provide a successful blueprint others may adopt as a strategy for asserting the value proposition of their Honors College to administration leaders, overcoming budget obstacles, and devising solutions for a more equitable workload for faculty and staff.