Published on Sep. 4, 2015
Last month, Undergraduate Research Director Linda Blockus and Assistant Director Mike Cohen traveled to the University of Central Florida as invited guests of the Florida Statewide Symposium on Undergraduate Research and they did not go alone. More than 30 Mr. Potato Head figures accompanied the team, though the toys had to ride in the luggage bay.
The potato heads were part of Blockus’ communication exercise for the administrators and faculty at the symposium. Before the toys were loaded onto the plane, they were put together in the most puzzling ways possible and photographed before being stripped down to their parts once again.
Attendees at the symposium were separated into pairs. Sitting back-to-back, one described the configuration of the potato head to their partner by looking at the photograph.
The exercise is designed to illustrate the difficulties students can experience when entering a new environment, as communication is key in developing a collaborative research experience.
Blockus also gave the keynote seminar “Characteristics of Excellence in Undergraduate Research: Nurturing an Environment for Success.”