SOU to Showcase Student, Faculty Research and Performance Art

(Ashland, Ore.) —Southern Oregon University is planning once again to showcase student and faculty research and performance art projects during its 8th annual Southern Oregon Arts and Research (SOAR) event, taking place May 11-15 throughout SOU’s main campus in Ashland.
A weeklong event with a program of ongoing concurrent sessions, SOAR brings together an array of disciplines, projects, and displays, with the students and faculty responsible for the work available to discuss and explain it.
“This is one of my favorite events of the year,” said Jeffrey Gayton, Director of SOU’s Learning Commons and University Librarian. “There is a wide variety of multi-disciplinary work that will be presented during SOAR week. This event really serves as a bridge between the classroom and the community and provides an opportunity for students to share some of their creative and academic accomplishments with a wide audience.”
SOAR week begins with an opening ceremony Monday, May 11, at noon, then continues with demonstrations, performances, and presentations throughout the day for the rest of the week.
Art exhibitions that will be on display in Hannon Library during SOAR week—and throughout the month of May—include “10 Years, 9 Months, 3 Weeks, and 5 Days,” a multi-media display and introduction to the topic of modern-day atrocities; “BECOMING,” a documentary film chronicling the SOU football national championship season; and “Jim Rock Historic Can Collection,” a series of images of historic cans assembled by Jim Rock over his career as an archaeologist with the US Forest Service.
Another highly anticipated presentation is “Vulnerability of the Nation’s Critical Infrastructure,” a demonstration by Dr. Lynn Ackler and seven computer science students that focuses on the Rogue Valley and includes research posters, architectural models, technology hardware, and visually compelling graphics illustrating what could happen should a hacker disable or disrupt local civil infrastructure. The goal of the project is to create awareness regarding the liabilities of these important computer systems. The group will also display the demo in Salem on May 19.
“There will be academic presentations on topics including an analysis of the battle at Captain Jack’s Stronghold during the Modoc War, food insecurity, the impacts of agriculture on water quality, voter engagement, the effects of urban forestry on crime in Josephine County, the benefits of bilingual education, and much, much more,” according to Gayton. “There truly is something for everybody during SOAR, and far too much going on to name everything.”
Admission to all SOAR events is free and open to the public, and free parking will be available campus-wide during SOAR week. For more information, and a complete schedule of events, please visit
About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power, and it is the first university in the nation to balance 100% of its water consumption. Visit