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Mallory Millington
Evaluation of potential impact of tar sands mining on the integrity of groundwater quality in PR Spring, Uinta Basin, Utah, a research poster that will be on display at the state Capitol on Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014.

SALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah and Utah State University undergraduate students will present research posters to the Legislature this week.

"Research Posters on the Hill: A Celebration of Undergraduate Research" will be presented from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday in the rotunda of the state Capitol. The event is also open to the public.

The event, now in its 14th year, gives lawmakers the opportunity to see the high-caliber research projects coming from undergraduate students at the state's two public research institutions, and the value of funding from the state to support higher education.

"Research offers our undergraduate students the opportunity to deeply engage in their education," said David W. Pershing, president of the University of Utah. "They are allowed to explore, discover, imagine possibilities and create real solutions to real problems with a faculty mentor. Research and creative activities add a hands-on dimension that is an essential component of a research university such the University of Utah."

Students selected to participate represent a diverse range of research topics. A sampling of this year's subjects include research on preterm birth and chronic kidney disease; the effects of cigarette smoke and age-related macular degeneration; how many people feel powerless to change their economic circumstances; understanding the molecular origins of obesity; the impact of tar sands mining on groundwater; and looking at evidence of tsunamis on ancient Lake Bonneville.