LSUA News Articles


Nov 8, 2021, 11:52 AM
The Oak Leaf: LSUA’s Undergraduate Teaching and Research Journal

ALEXANDRIA - Associate Professor Sandra Gilliland, director of LSUA’s Center for Opportunity, Research, and Experiential Learning, is excited to announce the fall launch of the print edition of The Oak Leaf:  LSUA’s Undergraduate Teaching and Research Journal.


The idea of an undergrad research journal was conceived by Associate Professor of Chemistry Gerard Dumancas, who began the journal with an endowed professorship. After the journal became associated with CORE, Dr. Gilliland appointed Dr. Ginger Jones as its editor. The fall launch kicked off November 1 in the LSUA’s Bolton Library. A second public event, moderated by Professor of English Alice Blackwell, will be held November 15, 6:30 PM at the Westside Regional Library, 5416 Provine Place, in Alexandria. 


To read the latest edition, visit The Oak Leaf website at or the LSUA publications website at


At the launch event, the journal’s editor, Dr. Jones, introduced faculty mentors and student authors present for the panel discussion. Faculty mentors included: Instructor of English Matthew Stokes, Assistant Professor John Marks, and Professor Melissa Parks, an invited contributor.  LSUA students Vi Nguyen, Jerad Daniel, Tia Malak also participated along with Emma Downing of Oklahoma Baptist University.


During the panel, published students and their faculty mentors discussed the hard work of revision and the pride that comes with publishing their original research. Students considering submitting work for future publications were encouraged by Jerad Daniel to “Go for it! Why not?  If one of your professors asks you to consider [publication] then they obviously see something in you and your work that lets them know you can do it. So, just go for it!” Dr. Parks mentioned that reviewers’ comments help create a stronger manuscript and set a bar for students. Mr. Stokes said he believed the extra work for faculty was well worth the investment. Vi Nguyen and Tia Malak told of the pride they experienced in having their work accepted by the peer-reviewed journal. Emma Downing reminded the audience that “even though we’re all undergraduates, we can publish, and we want to publish.”